1. What does exactly "wordlessness" mean in regard to Sherman's photographs? Does it mean they do not have any message or they don't use words or something else?

2. Does "to be overlooked" mean "to be denied"?

3. Does "That is its function" mean "denying history is one of the functions of fetishes"?

4. Does "Traps" here imply "difficulties"?

5. Does "risks the danger of" mean "increases the danger of"?

6. What does "a mute a-signifying state" mean?


The wordlessness and despair in Cindy Sherman's work represents the wordlessness and despair that ensues when a fetishist structure, the means of erasing history and memory, collapses, leaving a void in its wake. The fetish necessarily wants history to be overlooked. That is its function.’ Though not reducible to them, Sherman’s work does exhibit the traps that exist in engaging with the discourse of fetishism for the representation of the female body. As the female body is already so closely aligned in the cultural imaginary with fetishism, any deconstruction of this structure risks the danger of collapsing into a mute a-signifying state (Art and Psychoanalysis by Maria Walsh).

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