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Durham University

Institute of Advanced Study

Past Events

One-day Postgraduate, Multidisciplinary Workshop at Durham - Body, Corporeality and Identity

19th May 2012, 09:30 to 16:30, Joachim Room, College of St Hild & St Bede

At Durham University workshops have explored human sensory experience and engagement with the material world, audiences and corporeal displays and what it is to be human. Continuing this innovation and momentum, this workshop builds on the wider international debate on Body Theory and creates a multidisciplinary, environment for postgraduates and early career researchers to discuss crucial themes in the study of the body. Philosophical, sociological, geographical, and anthropological scholarship has increasingly addressed the ways in which we approach material culture and perception of the body.

Research by Maurice Merleau-Ponty, Mike Featherstone, Margaret Turner and Chris Shilling among others has identified, albeit in different ways, the significance of the interrelationships between the body, the world and the other. From human representation and mortuary activities to public and domestic spheres, the body in society is translated, manipulated and used in a range of material and metaphysical expressions. As such, the body is an essential research topic that transcends disciplines, timeframes and geographies. This workshop thus aims to bring together postgraduates from disciplines across the social sciences and discuss their material and theoretical approach to the study of the human body.

Speakers are asked to consider how their discipline can contribute to the study of the body, to critique the concept of body identity and examine how it might be constituted (though not limited to) through the following:
• Body schema (corporeal appearances, size and capacities)
• Performance and Space
• Ritual and Religion
• Architecture and objects
• Materiality and Corporeality
• Health and Medicine

Session 1 Health, Illness and Medicine
Dori Beeler (Anthropology): Reike: An Anthropological Analysis
Avishek Parui (English Studies): Malingerers and ‘Shiverers':Studying the Medical Politics of the Post-war Male Body in Shell-shock
Rachael Allen (Independent Artist): The Art of Illness: Contemporary Artists' Search for a Cure?

Session 2 Ritual and Religion
Lisa Brundle (Archaeology): Representational Art and Corporeality: Perceptions of the Human Body in the Early Anglo-Saxon World
Jennifer Key (English, University of St Andrews): The Sinful Body in Anglo-Saxon Hagiography Vengeance Miracles
Dr Stuart Foyle (Theology & Philosophy, Durham and Notre Dame): Problems and Motivations for the Belief in a Bodily Resurrection: Philosophical and Theological Re-sources for Study of the Body

Session 3 Collective Bodies
Carla Cesare (Art History and Design Culture, Northumbria University): Sewing the Self: Constructing Femininity in Interwar Britain
Adrian Gras-Velazquez (Modern Languages & Culture): Thou Shall Die at the End: Contemporary Spanish Culture and the Homosexual Male Body
Maria Kastrinou (Anthropology): ‘It is Us or it is Chaos': Body and the State in Syria

**Please note that delegate spaces are limited-so if have not already registered-please notify Lisa Brundle at Free registration is based on a first come, first served basis. After the funded-spaces have been allocated you are welcome to attend, but there will be a registration fee of £8 (for refreshments for the whole day).

Contact for more information about this event.