Dmitry Kurakin 1, 2
  • 1 National Research University Higher School of Economics, 20 Myasnitskaya Str., Moscow, 101000, Russian Federation
  • 2 Yale University, 204 Prospect St., room 2004, New Haven, CT, USA, 06511

Models of the Body in Contemporary Popular and Expert Discourse: Toward a Cultural Sociological Perspective of Analysis

2011, vol. 10, No. 1-2, pp. 56–74 [issue contents]
The paper provides an outline of the Durkheimian cultural sociology of the body as a particular program in corporeal sociology. Rapid development of the sociological theories of body, which takes place during the last quarter century, indicates that body somehow appears to be an arena for the events which are particularly important for the changes in contemporary social life. The problems of bioethics, prominent shifts in lifestyles, wider distribution of the new forms of body care, the new meanings of the sport, transformations in sexual behavior, and the new kinds of violence — all those and many other events and tendencies shape particular “enclaves” of the corporeality as well as huge shifts in the representations of the “natural” with respect to the body. The paper proceeds from the presupposition that the fundamental cause for the mentioned changes to be recognized is that the body remains as most stable, shared and generally valid locus of the sacred, which is being progressively fragmenting and achieving all the more fluid shapes. If the presupposition is correct, then cultural sociology, based on the Durkheimian theory of the sacred, obtains a certain epistemic priority in the field of the sociological studies of body, which is to be resulted in future researches. Accordingly, the paper is to be seen as an invitation to such researches as well as discussions and the argument development. The preliminary outline is performed that situates the suggested program of the cultural sociology of the body in the context of contemporary sociological theory. The statements and hypotheses are made, and the most promising research areas are suggested.
Citation: Kurakin Dmitry Yur'evich (2011) Modeli tela v sovremennom populyarnom i ekspertnom diskurse: k kul'tursotsiologicheskoy perspektive analiza [Models of the Body in Contemporary Popular and Expert Discourse: Toward a Cultural Sociological Perspective of Analysis] The Russian Sociological Review, 1-2, pp. 56-74 (in Russian)
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