Let's make a fuss

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School of Arts, Design and Architecture | Master's thesis
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Taiteen ja median maisteriohjelma
The research Let’s Make a Fuss aims to understand the possibilities of visual communication design to examine the often unnoticed aspects of sexist structures that pervade our daily lives. It explores the complexities of engaging men in feminist conversations, recognizing the importance of inclusivity and diverse perspectives in feminist dialogue. Therefore, using the framework of aspect change —the phenomenon of becoming aware of different perspectives— it examines how print media can serve as a valuable tool for creating interventions that draw attention to the existence of sexist structures within our personal experiences and disseminate diverse perspectives on the issue. The study consists of two parts: a theoretical analysis and a practical exploration. The theoretical analysis draws on historical contexts, academic literature reviews, and elicitations —collaborative dialogues— to understand the relationship and make connections between print media, feminism, and aspect change. From this analysis and the insights gained, nine concepts are defined —continuity, plurality of voices, accessibility, materiality, visual language, anonymity, digital technologies, sexist structures, and questions. These concepts are then applied in the practical exploration which is developed in two phases. The first phase consists of distributing flyers with questions in public spaces. The questions encourage personal reflection on the implications of sexist structures and invite individuals to respond anonymously via QR codes. The second phase consists of publishing the collected narratives in order to disseminate diverse stories, lived experiences, and perspectives on the impact of sexist structures. Through theoretical and practical research, this research attempts to illuminate the hidden dimensions of gender inequality and facilitate a deeper understanding and dialogue about these pervasive societal issues through the powerful medium of print. Ultimately, this thesis and its accompanying components are an act of dissent.
Karhumaa, Arja
Thesis advisor
Melzer, Tine
print media, feminism, aspect change, publishing, plurality of voices, intervention, public space, questions
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