Corporeality, Medical Technologies and Contemporary Culture

By Francisco Ortega

© 2014 – Birkbeck Law Press

16 pages

Purchasing Options:
Paperback: 9781138924765
pub: 2015-06-08
US Dollars$49.95
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Hardback: 9780415593229
pub: 2013-11-28
US Dollars$135.00
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About the Book

This book examines the confusions and contradictions that manifest in prevalent attitudes towards the body, as well as in related bodily practices.

The body is simultaneously our reference for the certainties of nature and the locus of a desire for transformation and reinvention. The body is at the same time worshipped and despised; an object of desire and of design. Francisco Ortega analyses how the body has become both a screen for the projection of our ideas and imaginings about ourselves and conversely an object of suspicion, anxiety, and discomfort. Addressing practices of corporeal ascesis (such as bodybuilding and dietetics), medical technologies, and radical anatomical modifications, Ortega documents the ambiguous legacy of a western theoretical tradition that has always despised the body.

Utilising a theoretical framework that is mainly informed by the phenomenology of the body, feminist theory, disability studies and the thought of Michel Foucault, Corporeality, Medical Technologies and Contemporary Culture address several ethical and psychological issues associated with the experience and perception of the body in our cultural landscape. Drawing on these diverse areas of philosophical and analytical work, this book will interest those researching Law, Medicine, and Sociology.

Table of Contents

1. The body between constructionism and phenomenology 2. The transparent body. Toward a phenomenological critique of the medical visualization of the body 3. From ascesis to bioascesis 4. Bodies on Trial. Glimpses into the legal implications of biological identities and the challenges of disability.

About the Author

Francisco Ortega is Associate Professor at the Institute for Social Medicine of the State University of Rio de Janeiro, and Visiting Senior Research Fellow at the Department of Social Science, Health and Medicine of King’s College, London (2012-2013).

About the Series

Birkbeck Law Press

Birkbeck Law School has been recognised as an international centre of research excellence, specialising in legal theory and theoretically informed socio-legal research and pioneering critical approaches to scholarship.

Birkbeck Law Press aims to develop a distinct publishing profile by addressing the legal challenges of late modernity. Globalisation and the move towards universal legal values, which should respect cultural specificities and local conditions, has created the urgent need for greater dialogue and understanding between the major schools of thought and legal systems in the world. Most legal publishing, driven by the needs of specialisation and the state-based nature of positive law, has not systematically addressed these concerns.

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Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
LAW000000
LAW / General
LAW046000
LAW / Health
MED003040
MEDICAL / Allied Health Services / Medical Technology
PHI015000
PHILOSOPHY / Mind & Body
SCI010000
SCIENCE / Biotechnology
SOC057000
SOCIAL SCIENCE / Disease & Health Issues
TEC059000
TECHNOLOGY & ENGINEERING / Biomedical