Library Dissertation Showcase

Disconnect Something: ‘Glitch’, Failure, and Miranda July’s New Sincerity Project

  • Year of Publication:
  • 2019

This study is interested in how concepts of failure and the ‘technical glitch’ manifest in the work of writer, filmmaker, and intermedial artist Miranda July. In the wake of a postmodern era associated with brokenness, irony and fragmentation, I consider how July’s New Sincerity project works through and appropriates such features in an attempt to establish new connections. Using July’s ambivalent attitudes to technology as a backdrop, I explore how July uses the concept of the ‘glitch’ to generative aesthetic and political effects – opening up a space for queer and feminist critical practice. Through a reader-response approach to July’s online art project Learning to Love You More, alongside a phenomenological reading of her literary fiction, I consider how July uses the notion of ‘glitch’ to challenge and disrupt the streamlining, sterilising effects of the internet in the 21st century. I suggest that July advocates a post-digital return to the material, to the immediacy of the environment and the body, embracing flaws,
‘glitches’ and imperfections. Through a digital ‘disconnection’, July creates the connections our contemporary moment so desperately desires: reconnecting with the self, with others, and with our environment.

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