Course Catalog

01:988:392 Thinking Bodies

Course Outline

This course in an introduction to various philosophical and theoretical accounts of the body. The concept of the body is generally relegated to a secondary or subordinate category relative to the privilege of mind or Reason in the history of Western thought. This course will examine the work of a number of theorists who have questioned and problematized the subordination of body to mind. It is divided into four parts: the first is an introduction and selective survey of the ways in which the body (and mind) have been formulated in modern Western thought. The second part focuses on phenomenological and psychoanalytic conceptions of the lived body, the body of experience or the corporeal schema. The third part examines the body as a (writing) surface, a surface of social inscription, marking, and training. The fourth and final part explores the implications of acknowledging the sexual specificity of the body for notions of knowledge and representation.