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Memorialising and Forgetting: Corporeal Generosity and the Gift of the Intersexed Other

Memorialising and Forgetting: Corporeal Generosity and the Gift of the Intersexed Other <jats:p> ‘Modifying bodies’ evokes two different kinds of bodies, too often thought of as separate: those bodies which are modified, and those which call for and enact the modification. This paper seeks to explore the ethical and political significance of the modification of ‘intersexed’ bodies, using Rosalyn Diprose's concept of ‘corporeal generosity’. It argues that the visceral reaction to the bodies of those not recognised within the regimes of sexual dimorphism is shaped by perceptual practices formed through the political memorialising of the generosity of particular, privileged others, and the forgetting of the generosity of othered others. These patterns of memorialising and forgetting also shape the call for surgical intervention, such as ‘corrective’ surgery, performed on the body of the intersexed child, become the means for memorialising the gifts of the sexually dimorphic, and forgetting the gifts of those deemed ‘ambiguous’. This approach enables the ethical and political significance of this technological intervention to be understood as of a piece with larger somatechnics, shared, challenged and perpetuated through corporeal generosity. </jats:p> http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Somatechnics Edinburgh University Press

Memorialising and Forgetting: Corporeal Generosity and the Gift of the Intersexed Other

Somatechnics , Volume 1 (2): 272 – Sep 1, 2011

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Publisher
Edinburgh University Press
Copyright
© Edinburgh University Press
Subject
Articles; Film, Media and Cultural Studies
ISSN
2044-0138
eISSN
2044-0146
DOI
10.3366/soma.2011.0020
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

<jats:p> ‘Modifying bodies’ evokes two different kinds of bodies, too often thought of as separate: those bodies which are modified, and those which call for and enact the modification. This paper seeks to explore the ethical and political significance of the modification of ‘intersexed’ bodies, using Rosalyn Diprose's concept of ‘corporeal generosity’. It argues that the visceral reaction to the bodies of those not recognised within the regimes of sexual dimorphism is shaped by perceptual practices formed through the political memorialising of the generosity of particular, privileged others, and the forgetting of the generosity of othered others. These patterns of memorialising and forgetting also shape the call for surgical intervention, such as ‘corrective’ surgery, performed on the body of the intersexed child, become the means for memorialising the gifts of the sexually dimorphic, and forgetting the gifts of those deemed ‘ambiguous’. This approach enables the ethical and political significance of this technological intervention to be understood as of a piece with larger somatechnics, shared, challenged and perpetuated through corporeal generosity. </jats:p>

Journal

SomatechnicsEdinburgh University Press

Published: Sep 1, 2011

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