When you find the perfect image…

I’ve been very busy recently with PhD writing and marking from my day-job. This summer I have another PhD chapter to write and in August I have the honour of presenting at the IBBY international congress in Athens! I have to record an oral presentation on a PowerPoint by Thursday, so I have been creating the PowerPoint presentation. As a person with a learning disability (dyspraxia) I find it easier to make sense of oral presentations if there are images to help me process what is being said, so I work hard on my own presentations.

My paper for IBBY is entitled “Dangerously attractive foreign witches in children’s fantasy fiction: Harry Potter and His Dark Materials”. I was searching for images of exoticised women, and I found these:

spanish dancer french womanBoth are dark-haired women, both with their heads turned away from the viewer, showing their long necks, both wearing white open-necked blouses and black bodices. The shape of the Spanish dancer’s legs are visible through her skirt, and her feet and one shoulder are bare. Not much has changed in the British view of the exotic, sexual Other in mainland Europe.


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