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Lecture 3

Travesti Lecture 3 and 4

3 Pages

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Andrea Muehlebach

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Lecture 2: Travesti Chapter 2 Outline of Today’s Lecture - Anthropology of the body - Anthropology of identity Anthropology of the Body Marcel Mauss: “Techniques of the Body” (1934) - Famous anthropologist who wrote a number of famous articles that are still today used as reference - He starts off why does he call it techniques (plural and not singular) o He noticed that different people have different ways in which inhabit their bodies - He was a French nationalist and fought in the WW1, so most of his articles are written based on his experience in the battlefield o This is where he first encountered that perhaps there are different techniques people do with their bodies - He is saying how one can create of what it means to do an anthropology of the body - With techniques of the body, I mean “the ways in which from society to society men know how to use their bodies” o Uses “know” because we are looking at different way in which people harbor look at implicit forms of knowledge of what is “proper” and “improper” of how we hold our bodies - He is interested in the kinds of knowledge that we have, of unconscious and unspoken cultural knowledge about norms and normativity - He reported that the English regiments, fought along side with French regiments o Because they fought well together, they wanted the French band to accompany the English march for the English solider o He said that British soldiers were for years taught how to the march for years, and they were unable to move to the French band o They were unable to adjust their ways according to the rhythm and movement of the French - In the 20 century, he said that if you look at British children, you would know just by the way they were sitting on a table o It was fundamentally different where French children were taught table manner o There is an education of the body in terms of how children eat - Another example: walking o He was in New York, and had time to watch nurses walk away o He noticed that the way they walked was profoundly different from the way French people walked - One major thing he wanted to say: Process of Imitiation when it comes to acquireing these bodily movement o Most children actually unconscious imitate what it means to eat and walk etc. - Another major thing: Education o Many of us has been explicitly taught how to hold your body in the “Right” kind of way - Habitus - The culturally specific ways in which individuals and groups acquire (imitate or learn) bodily habits and the ability to perform these - Habitus is the result of collective ideologies and practices rather than individual or psychological ones The Secret to Sexy Heel Wearing - Video watched in class about how to walking in high heels stilettos - This is a very flashy example of techniques of the body and how we are surround with a pedagogy of education about body techniques Travesti - Travesti are very conscious of the fact that the body can be made subject to technique - Conscious of the fact that you can imitate certain kinds of bodily dispositions - Conscious on education  educating younger travesty in the art of modifying (painful or intrusive) techniques - They are really one kind of extreme example of general human prepensely to modify and work on our body to be X or Y - They are very good at imitating, not just femininity, but articulate and expressive about what it means to be a beautiful women in Brazil - They are very good example of a group of people of studying and sharing a lot of information to what it means to inhabit the femininity in Brazil What evidence does Kulick provide to show how travesti imitate and learn femininity? - Perhaps from watching soap operas where they would name themselves after characters
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