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Cornell University    
  Jan 21, 2018
Courses of Study 2015-2016 [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

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ANTHR 3465 - Anthropology of the Body

(crosslisted) BSOC 3460 , STS 3460  
(GB) (CA-AS)      
Fall. 4 credits.

S. Langwick.

The body is often taken for granted as the material substrate for culture – its physicality the purview of science and its meaning the purview of social studies. This course examines a range of texts that treat the body as both subject and object of cultural, technological, political, and ethical processes. Students investigate the cultivation of physical and social bodies through ethnographic and historical materials concerning healing and medicine, discipline and labor, governance and religion, aesthetics and desire. We will attend to histories of gender, race, class, sexuality, (post)coloniality, modernization, science, transnationalism. Some readings will investigate the complex mediations that account for the body as icon, text, metaphor, and commodity. Others will contend that the production and reproduction of the body across different times and spaces challenges traditional notions of materiality and physicality.

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