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Ann Haughton

Thesis: Masculinity and mythology in the art of the Italian Renaissance: a study of gender, sexuality and identity

My AHRC-funded doctoral research thesis titled Masculinity and mythology in the art of the Italian Renaissance examines how visual representations of mythology produced in the Italian Renaissance conflated erotic desire and philosophical allegory, and in particular how these records and proclamations of contemporary male power relations were related to the constructs and dynamics of gender, identity and sexuality. I was particularly interested in the ways in which psychological meanings, patterns and identities assigned to sexual acts between males found expression in the visual domain of the early modern period through the sanctioning veil of mythology. My research also examined the visual assertion of historicity, power differentials and gender politics of male same-sex desire through the lens of wider contemporary social and cultural frameworks.

I have presented thirteen international conference papers including the Renaissance Society of America annual conference (San Diego, April 2013), where I presented a paper ‘Apollo and Marsyas: The Masculine Body Flayed Bare’. My peer-reviewed article ‘Myths of Same-Sex Desire in the Italian Renaissance’ was published in the Warwick on-line Exchanges journal in October 2015.