Anne Marie Butler is Assistant Professor of Art History and Women, Gender, and Sexuality at Kalamazoo College, Kalamazoo, MI. Her research areas are global contemporary art, Middle East North Africa studies, gender and sexuality studies, and queer theory. Her scholarship considers issues of gender, sexuality, and queerness within the parameters of the nation-state, and the imbrication of state authority within social constructs. She is currently working on a book project about surrealism in Tunisia that was recently awarded Honorable Mention for the College Art Association Professional Development Grant. In the book, Dr. Butler considers emerging and ongoing questions about how Tunisian artists critique embedded systems of power by examining surrealism as a methodology by which Tunisian women artists negotiate the discordant demands of the state apparatus and social norms. Additional scholarship in progress on contemporary Tunisian visual art addresses the overlap of surrealism and queerness, sexuality in surrealism, contemporary performance art, and negotiations of repression.
Dr. Butler received her M.A. from New York University and her Ph.D. from the University at Buffalo. Her dissertation, “Unintelligible Bodies: Surrealism and Queerness in Contemporary Tunisian Women’s Art” (2019), revealed that many Tunisian women artists imagine queer bodies, bodily configurations, and bodily relationships that rebuke normative conceptualizations of the body, and argued that surrealism and queerness are strategies by which Tunisian women artists launch critiques of repressive systems that remain embedded within the Tunisian state and society.