Faculty of Education, Social Sciences and Law

Sociology and Social Policy

Research Student: Corin Taylor

Queer Technologies of the Breast

Photo of Corin Taylor

My research focuses on the modification and management of breasts by non-heterosexual and/or queer people who are currently female identified or were assigned female at birth but no longer identify as such. My work draws upon literature in the fields of cosmetic surgery, trans theory and body modification. I am using Cressida Heyes’ (2007) work on Foucault’s theory of normalization and Zowie Davy’s (2011) concept of ‘bodily aesthetics’ and distinctions between the ‘social,’ ‘sexual’ and ‘phenomenological’ bodies as my theoretical framework to explore if, and what, norms around breasts and identity exist in queer and/or non-heterosexual communities and how identities are negotiated in relation to breasted experience and across different social contexts. My fieldwork consisted of an online questionnaire and follow-up interviews with thirty participants in the UK and Ireland.


I am an ESRC-funded third year PhD student in the Centre for Interdisciplinary Gender Studies and the School of Sociology and Social Policy. I completed my BA in Women’s Studies with Critical Theory at London Metropolitan University in 2005, and my MA in Gender Studies (Research) at the University of Leeds in 2010.

My research interests include:

  • Subcultural norms surrounding non-heterosexual/queer bodies
  • Queer normativities
  • Borderlands between female and trans masculinities
  • Transition vlogs and the use of social media by LGBTQ communities
  • Body modification
  • Representations of gender in healthcare

Conference Papers

  • Controlling the Queer Body: Breasts, Body Modification and Identity Management. Body Projects Conference, 9th March 2013, University of York.
  • Non-normative Gender Identities, Accessibility, and the Privilege of Identity. 20th Lesbian Lives Conference: The Modern Lesbian, 15th & 16th February 2013, University of Brighton.
  • Queer Technologies of the Breast. Gendered Subjects Postgraduate Event, 21st June 2012, Northumbria University.
  • Queer Breasts: Masculine Female Embodiment in the Borderlands. 18th Lesbian Lives Conference ‘Revolting: Bodies, Politics and Genders,’ 11th & 12th February 2011, University of Brighton.

Teaching Experience

  • SLSP1143 Study Skills for Today and Tomorrow (Semester 1, 2012/13)
  • SLSP1100 Identity, Difference and Inequalities (Semester 2, 2012/13)
  • SLSP2050 The Sociology of Gender (Semester 2, 2012/13)
  • Guest lecturer, “Modifying Bodies” on GEND5108M Contested Bodies (November 2012)

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