Five Bodies offers an introduction to some of the most urgent contemporary concerns within the sociology of the body. The book was first published in 1985 in the USA by Cornell University Press, and was nominated for the John Porter Award (sponsored by the Canadian Sociology and Anthropology Association). A path breaking book, it offered a framework for the growing field of the sociology of the body and opened up ‘the body’ for sociological research. This new edition (the previous edition was published by Cornell University Press (1985) has been substantially revised and updated to address today's issues of the body in modern life, community and politics. John O'Neill examines how embodied selves and relationships are being re-shaped and re-figured and how the embodied figures of the polity, economy and society represent the contested notions of identity, desire, wholeness and fragmentation. He focuses upon those cultural practices through which we map our macro–micro worlds: articulating a cosmology; a body politic; a productive/consumptive economy; a bio-technological frontier of human design and transplantation.
The World's Body
The World's Body
Today we are busy giving a shape to a world that is no longer our own. Such, at any rate, is the complaint of many artists and social scientists who speak of our world alienation or, as I see it, a process of negative anthropomorphism. We are no longer reflected in our work, our institutions, or our environment. The abstraction of modern experience is based upon the removal of the human shape in favor of the measured – number, line, sign, code, index. Everywhere anthropomorphism, the creative force in the civic shaping of human beings, is in retreat. Such a fate would be unthinkable were it not in fact intelligible as a strategy whereby humankind has redesigned its own body, ...