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CFP: Bodies of Belief

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Human bodies are shaped not only by their genetic endowment but also by the belief systems of the cultures in which they develop and function. Such belief systems vary from unarticulated background assumptions to ritualized practices and explicit doctrines or even to formulated laws enacted and enforced by social institutions. Likewise, belief’s somatic shaping ranges widely from the stylization of external appearance (including clothing and ornamentation) to the structuring of bodily actions and comportment (including essential practices like eating) and even to inner modes of affect (which are felt somatically). Beliefs become socially and politically effective through bodily practices especially when these are highly stylized in formal rituals. In this way traditions are congealed in habitual practices. The beliefs that the human soma embodies and expresses are not confined to established social norms; they also include items of faith and commitment that are individualistic, nonconformist, or even antagonistic to the cultural mainstream. More than a mere instrument of compliance or worship, the soma is also a site and weapon of protest.

The Journal of Somaesthetics invites submissions from any disciplinary perspective that address the relationship between the soma and belief.

Deadline: September 1, 2015

Papers should be between 5,000 and 8,000 words and prepared for blind review. Authors should submit a separate cover page including: author’s name, institutional affiliation, word count and contact information. All submissions should be sent to the Associate Editor, Russell Pryba at rpryba@gmail.com. Please put “Bodies of Belief” in the subject line. General inquires regarding this issue should be sent to the Guest Editor, Bryan Turner at bturner@gc.cuny.edu

About the Journal of Somaesthetics: The Journal of Somaesthetics is a peer-reviewed, online, academic research journal devoted to research that advances the interdisciplinary field of somaesthetics, understood as the critical study and meliorative cultivation of the experience and performance of the living body (or soma) as a site of sensory appreciation (aesthesis) and creative self-stylization. The journal therefore welcomes contributions exploring the field of somaesthetics through one -or more- of the many disciplines that already inform this field: philosophy, aesthetics, arts and design research, technology studies, somatic, health, and social sciences, history, physiology, psychology and pedagogy. For more information about the journal, see http://journals.aau.dk/index.php/JOS