Pierre Bourdieu : the body as signifier of social

Pierre Bourdieu, ” tentative points on the social perception of the body “, Acts of research in social sciences, n° 14, 1977, p. 51.

“The body as a perceptible form” producing, as it is said, an impression of “[…] is, of all the manifestations of the ” person “, the one that leaves the least easy to modify, temporarily and especially permanently and, at the same time, one that is socially held to mean the more appropriately, because apart from any intention signifying, “to be deep “, the “nature” of the ” person “. The body therefore functions as a language through which it is spoken, rather than we speak, a language of nature, which betrays the most hidden and most true, both, because the less consciously controlled and controllable, and that contaminates and which over-determines its messages are perceived and not previews are all expressions of intentional to begin with the word.

But the language of the natural identity is in fact a language of social identity, and naturalized, in the form for example of vulgarity or natural distinction, and thus legitimized. It is hardly necessary to recall that the body, in that it is more natural in appearance, that is to say, in the dimensions of its conformation (the visible volume, height, weight, etc) is a social product ” .

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