Disrupting Body Boundaries

Dec '16

The workshop muddles the contours of the body and rubs against the idea of an untouched, healthy, bare, bounded body.

December 9th, 2016

Location: University of Amsterdam, Anthropology Common Room (B5.12)

Time: 13.00 – 17.30

The workshop will highlight normative registers; processes of valuing; the taming of circumstances; the development of skills; the process of learning to be more attentive to some things and less to others; the attuning to other bodies and heterogeneous non-humans. All along we will wonder what bodily boundaries are made to be in the various practices studied. The aim is for our praxiographic attention to open the fault lines in more traditional understandings of the bodily boundedness of humans. dsc07383

The speakers:

1. Swasti Mishra (UvA) takes eating as a lens to reconfigure what drug-consumption is. She reconfigures the drug-eater as not a rational subject dosing her drug and knowing her body prior to the high but as rather someone who learns to be affected differently through her/his own experimental practices.

2. Sophie Mueller and Tobias Boll (University of Mainz) question the notion of body boundaries through the cases of pregnancy, athletes with prosthetics, and dieting.

3. Justine Laurent (UvA) and Maartje Hoogsteyns (AMC) work with stories about disrupted defecation to explore how people with unruly bowels design strategies, accumulate tactics and tame their environment so as to live fairly undisrupted lives.

4. Emily Yates-Doerr (UvA) revisits Scheper-Hughes and Lock’s “three bodies” paper — a classic in the field of medical anthropology — to ask how an anthropology of health might proceed if it was not, at the outset, centered upon bodies. The ethnographic materials she uses to open up this question are drawn from fieldwork in a nutrition clinic and a marketplace in Guatemala.