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Corpus: An Interdisciplinary Reader on Bodies and Knowledge [Hardcover]

by Monica J. Casper, Paisley Currah

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Book Description

May 15, 2011 023011380X 978-0230113800
Corpus begins with the argument that traditional disciplines are unable to fully apprehend the body and embodiment and asserts that critical study of these topics urgently demands interdisciplinary approaches. The collection's 13 previously unpublished essays grapple with the place of bodies in a range of twenty-first century knowledge practices, including trauma, surveillance, aging, fat, food, feminist technoscience, death, biopolitics, and race, among others. The book's projected audience includes teachers and scholars of bodies and embodiment, interdisciplinary scholars and practitioners, and scholars interested in the any of the substantive content covered in the book. The collection may be of interest to anyone reading or writing in the areas of: cultural studies; queer, gender and sexuality studies; body and power; biopolitics; intersectional approaches to the body; anthropology of the body; sociology of the body; embodiment and space; digital bodies; anthropology of knowledge production; health, illness, and medicine studies; science, knowledge, and technology studies; and philosophy and social theory.

Table of Contents
Paisley Currah and Monica J. Casper, Bringing Forth the Body
Michelle Murphy, Distributed Reproduction
Dylan Rodríguez, Multiculturalist White Supremacy and the Substructure of the Body
Jonathan Xavier Inda, Materializing Hope: Racial Pharmaceuticals, Suffering Bodies, and Biological Citizenship
Darcy Freedman, Embodying Food Studies: Unpacking the Ways We Become What We Eat
Kathleen LeBesco, Epistemologies of Fatness: The Political Contours of Embodiment in Fat Studies
Lisa Jean Moore and Lara Rodriguez, Identities without Bodies: The New Sexuality Studies
Diana Mincyte, "The Bugs of the Earth": Reflections on Nature, Power, and the Laboring Body
Shoshana Magnet, The Audible Body: RFIDs, Surveillance, and Bodily Scrutiny
Mary Kosut, Virtual Body Modification: Embodiment, Identity and Nonconforming Avatars
Maurice Stevens, Trauma's Essential Bodies
Stephen Katz, Hold On!: Falling, Embodiment and the Materiality of Old Age
George Sanders, The Gimmick: or, The Productive Labor of Non-living Bodies

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Editorial Reviews


"Corpus provides a sorely needed update to conventional body studies. Collectively, the articles address the academic, technological, and economic questions we have today, while demonstrating deep knowledge of where the body has been and where it is going next. Combining sharp currency with historical complexity, this collection is an ideal teaching tool." - CL Cole, Professor, Gender and Women's Studies, Media and Cinema Studies, and Institute for Communication Research, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

"Deleuze, echoing Spinoza, has famously noted that we can never know in advance what a body can do. The essays in this wide-ranging collection document the impressive scope of what bodies are already considered capable of doing and encourage their readers to imagine an even vaster horizon for embodiment's future potential. Mindful of the biopolitical stakes at play, this genuinely interdisciplinary anthology is both erudite and deeply political. It offers food for thought for anybody who has a body." - Susan Stryker, Associate Professor, Gender Studies, Indiana University Bloomington

"A brilliant addition to the lively field of embodiment studies, this richly interdisciplinary collection interrogates how different bodies of knowledge produce complex and discrepant bodies that matter. Self-reflexive methods abound throughout its diverse and innovative chapters, each attuned to the politics of knowledge. Corpus is a must-read if you are wondering what has become of bodies and the way they are made meaningful in the twenty-first century." - Jennifer Terry, author of An American Obsession and editor of Deviant Bodies

"This book is a provocative delight. Whether theorizing about racialized medicine, embodied work relations, vanishing bodies, fat and food studies, or de-corporealization, this collection puts feminist and sexuality studies to work in new and exciting directions. The body in Corpus is never singular, always constructed orthogonally, and we readers are enriched by its many lessons." - Rayna Rapp, Professor, Anthropology, New York University

"By putting interdisciplinarity on the agenda and engaging with it through the highly fruitful topic of body and/ of knowledge, Corpus makes an important contribution to contemporary scholarship on the body." - Somatechnics

About the Author

Monica J. Casper is the Director of Humanities, Arts and Cultural Studies in the New College at Arizona State University. She is author of The Making of the Unborn Patient: A Social Anatomy of Fetal Surgery, editor of Synthetic Planet: Chemical Politics and the Hazards of Modern Life, and co-author of Missing Bodies: The Politics of Visibility.


Paisley Currah is a Professor of Political Science at Brooklyn College of the City University of New York. He is the co-editor of Transgender Rights and the author of the forthcoming book, The United States of Gender, an examination of the contradictions in state definitions of sex.  

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