Foreign Languages & Literatures ETDs

Publication Date

Summer 6-10-2018


This thesis undertakes an examination of the subject formation of the nameless protagonist and first-person narrator of Yoko Tawada’s novel, Das nackte Auge. Situated and framed by poststructuralist theorists such as Judith Butler and Michel Foucault, this thesis argues that the protagonist’s plurality of subject positions is established through her encounters with film, particularly in relation to the French actress Catherine Deneuve, in a process that reveals the overlapping networks of social, historical, and political structures that intersect to express her subjectivity as formed under systemic racism and sexism. Tawada’s novel provides an opportunity to examine how the protagonist is formed by and resists structures of imperial power, colonial subjugation, and gendered violence. The protagonist gradually begins to understand how her body holds traces of trauma beyond that of an individual experience, and how there is no existence outside the ideologies that shape the way she resides in a world dominated by a camera lens.


Yoko Tawada, Subjectivity, Das nackte Auge

Document Type




Degree Name

German Studies

Level of Degree


Department Name

Department of Foreign Languages and Literatures

First Committee Member (Chair)

Katrin Schroeter

Second Committee Member

Susanne Baackmann

Third Committee Member

Jason Wilby