Response Papers - week 5
Questions, ideas, notes for discussion:
- An assumption that Connerton speaks of and ambigously subscribes to, is the idea that all postural performances and bodily practices are signifying activities, all aimed at establishing a communication. In the last page of the chapter "Bodily practices", he refers to the human body being "included in the object domain thus defined only as the carrier of linguistic meanings or of meanings structured like a language" (104). Discursivity problem all over again but this time in the context of embodied actions, habits, gestures. Can we see this in the light of the tyranny of the hermeunetic tradition of classical studies and Biblical exegesis?
- Body appears in Connerton's argument as a mechanism that records, memorizes certain habits, gestures, and micro-performances unquestioningly (Docile bodies). Little attention I could follow in acknowledging the body as a "knowing subject" that responds to social conditioning structures and culturally specific situations. But then see p. 90 where he discusses Proust's Saint-Loup who establishes an embodied authority and agency "not by mechanically executing codes or punctiliously applying rules... but by the prestigious ease of his practiced performance." As a side note, considering the tension between the "socially legitimate body" and "the body which one has and is," why do we need to assume that the socially legitimate body is an unchanging matter?
- How does one archaeologically study, document, argue for daily practices, everyday performances, bodily actions, social memory, constructions of gender, socialization processes, forms of power and the like among past actors within excavated domestic contexts? Let us consider various strategies employed by Hodder et al, to achieve such an archaeological/scholarly performance at Catalhoyuk.