'Cultures of embodied experience: Technology, religion and body pedagogics’

Shilling, Chris and Mellor, Philip A. (2007) 'Cultures of embodied experience: Technology, religion and body pedagogics’. Sociological Review, 55 (3). pp. 531-549. ISSN 0038-0261. (The full text of this publication is not currently available from this repository. You may be able to access a copy if URLs are provided)

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Two trends have dominated recent sociological analyses of embodiment. There has, on the one hand, been a proliferation of analyses identifying bodies as the experiential vehicles through which we exist and interact in the world. On the other hand, this has been accompanied by a large growth in studies suggesting that technological advances have both increased our exposure to instrumental rationality and radically weakened the boundaries between humans and machines. Considered together, these trends raise an important question which has, however, been marginalised in the literature: if bodies are increasingly shaped and even constituted by the performative demands and invasive capacities of technology, what implications does this have for our lived experience of ourselves and our social and natural environment? In addressing this issue, our paper revisits Heidegger's discussion of the technological ‘enframing’ of humans and asks two questions. First, what have we lost experientially by being positioned as a ‘standing reserve’ for technologically driven demands for efficiency in contemporary society? Second, can the analysis of religious attempts to reframe human experience provide us with a perspective from outside this technological culture that enables us to appreciate the embodied experiences, dispositions and potentialities of humans in fresh ways? Our approach to these issues proceeds via a comparative study of the ‘body pedagogics’ of modern technological culture and two, very different, religious cultures.

Item Type: Article
Subjects: H Social Sciences
B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > BL Religion
H Social Sciences > HM Sociology
Divisions: Faculties > Social Sciences > School of Social Policy Sociology and Social Research
Depositing User: Chris Shilling
Date Deposited: 29 Jun 2011 12:17
Last Modified: 14 Apr 2014 15:09
Resource URI: https://kar.kent.ac.uk/id/eprint/4881 (The current URI for this page, for reference purposes)
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