This book provides a clear, focused road map to the study of the body in society. It defines, explains and applies core topics relating to the human body demonstrating how we approach it as a social phenomenon.
Each concept: Includes an easy to understand definition; Provides real-world examples; Gives suggestions for further reading; Is carefully cross-referenced to other related concepts
Written to meet the needs of the modern student this book offers the basic materials, tools and guidance needed study and write about the body.
Gesture and Habits
Definition Gestures and Habits are means of bodily expression at both an individual and a social level. Gestures are body movements that have socially, culturally or contextually ‘readable’ meanings. They may be sacred or profane. Habits are the embodied (and gestural) actions an [Page 99]individual characteristically employs in daily life and in social action. Habits are, to a large extent, self-regulated although within a social context. For example, personal grooming can be described as a series of regularly performed bodily habits that have social meaning. Habits can include gestures and some gestures will be habitual (for example, in religious rituals and observances).
Bodily gestures are one of the first means of communication a human infant is capable of replicating. A baby can ...