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Body

Totelin, Laurence ORCID: https://orcid.org/0000-0001-9576-1643 and King, Helen 2022. Body. Whitmarsh, Tim, ed. Oxford Classical Dictionary Online, Oxford University Press, (10.1093/acrefore/9780199381135.013.1120)

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Abstract

The ancient body emerged as a topic of research in the 1980s, and the discipline has grown dramatically since then. It aims at studying the ways in which people in the ancient world experienced their bodies, and how those experiences might have differed from modern ones. The discipline examines constructions of sex and gender; concepts of beauty and ugliness; the constituent parts of the body, its fluids, its limits, and the role that clothing plays in setting those boundaries; and the senses. Specific attention is paid to bodies that do not conform to ancient ideals of beauty and wellness (such as disabled and ageing bodies) and to bodies that elicited fascination and concern in antiquity (such as non-binary and intersex bodies). In the ancient world, anxieties towards non-normative bodies were addressed by attempting to control the body from infancy onward. That control was exercised both at the level of the family and at that of the state, which established links between the body and political order.

Item Type: Book Section
Date Type: Publication
Status: Published
Schools: History, Archaeology and Religion
Subjects: D History General and Old World > DE The Mediterranean Region. The Greco-Roman World
Publisher: Oxford University Press
Last Modified: 12 Dec 2023 13:15
URI: https://orca.cardiff.ac.uk/id/eprint/158027

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