Rethinking 'The Body in Pain'
Subjectivity (2016), DOI: 10.1057/s41286-016-0010-x
Posted: 24 Sep 2016
Date Written: September 23, 2016
This article calls into question two core suppositions of "The Body in Pain": That pain is sheerly aversive; and that those who inflict pain do so unawares. I argue that these pieties avoid disturbing questions regarding the pain-filled body. The controlled experience of pain is central to any number of practices; many of them place the body in extremis. Conversely, there are practices of pain-infliction undertaken with the expectation of gratification or social validation. Pain, in short, is alluring as well as aversive.
Keywords: Bataille, Scarry, Nietzsche, pain, torture, sadomasochism
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