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'(A) consistently interesting and provocative work, which offers a great deal in seven chapters. It marks an innovative interdisciplinary approach to questions of embodiment and subjectivity' - Disability and Society 'This is an elegantly written book which has, as its main aim, to rethink the idea of difference in the western imaginary through a consideration of two themes: monsters and how these have come to define, but potentially to deconstruct, normality; and the whole idea of vulnerability and the vulnerable and the extent to which such a state is one that all of us are constantly in danger of entering … The theoretical and philosophical content - Derrida, Lacan, Foucault, Irrigaray, Butler, Levinas, and Haraway in particular - together with the range of empirical examples ...

Contagious Encounters and the Ethics of Risk
Contagious encounters and the ethics of risk

In the last chapter, I outlined the extent to which the western ideal of the self's clean and proper body with its attributes of integrity, closure and autonomy is in a sense as imaginary as the monsters that threaten it. Nonetheless, the strength of the normative standard is so powerful that our society is constrained to go to extraordinary lengths to perpetuate a clear distinction between what is considered normal and acceptable, and what is abnormal and intolerable. It is not the case that what constitutes the standard remains static over a period of time, but that, despite a certain fluidity of definition, there remains always an oppositional relationship between the relevant ...

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