Outskirts online journal

Haylee Ruwaard

Further information

About the author

Haylee Ruwaard is a PhD candidate at Murdoch University. Haylee’s research interest is right-wing media populism and the effects on political identity and global media systems.

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Publication details

Volume 38, May 2018

Miley Cyrus as the posthuman: Media sexualisation and the intersections of capitalism



This article undertakes a semiotic deconstruction of Miley Cyrus’s image in two media photographs. I argue that she embodies a range of identities that simultaneously includes yet moves beyond sexualisation. Moral panic discourses about the impact of her influence can problematically view Cyrus through the lens of humanism where she is seen as highly sexualised and stereotypically gendered. This study suggests this outlook is limited. Rather, Cyrus can be perceived as a symbol of the posthuman as she integrates her biology with multiplying social subjectivities which fluctuate frequently. This integration creates many possible identities aside from those signifying sexualisation, which may ease or equalise current concerns about Cyrus’s influence. Yet, it cannot be ignored that Cyrus is operating within the confines of capitalism where identity diversification becomes highly profitable globally. As a result, this article examines the intersections of celebrity and capitalism. 


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Friday, 3 September, 2021 11:41 AM