Title

Moving Medicine: Theorizing Embodiment for a More Empowered and Connected Social Body

Publication Date

April 2018

Advisor(s)

Anthony Hatch

Major

Science in Society

Language

English (United States)

Abstract

This thesis investigates theories of embodiment through several embodied expressive experiences, including three movement-based therapies and two community-based embodied projects. Drawing on feminist epistemologies and standpoint theory, I explore the ambivalent location of these practices in relation to biomedicine. Through feminist phenomenology and materialisms, I analyze the material-semiotic constructions of embodiment reflected in these practices. In the contexts of biomedicalization and a neoliberal regime of health, I suggest that embodied expressive experiences like the cases considered here offer a more empowering approach to health and healing. Finally, I suggest that theories of embodiment shape understandings of health in critical ways, concluding from my final case studies that community-centered relational work can be the catalyst for rethinking the neoliberal regime of health.

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