The Body in Late-Capitalist USA

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1995 Trade paperback New. No dust jacket as issued. Explores how social practices shape the needs of the body. Publisher's overstock with remainder mark. Trade paperback (US). ... Glued binding. 216 p. Audience: General/trade. Read more Show Less

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Overview

In The Body in Late-Capitalist USA, Donald M. Lowe explores the varied social practices that code and construct the body. Arguing that our bodily lives are shaped by a complex of daily and ongoing practices—how we work, what we buy and consume—Lowe contends that as a result of the commodification of these and other social practices in the late-twentieth century, what we often understand to be the needs of the body are in fact means for capital accumulation.
Moving beyond studies of representations and images of the body, Lowe focuses on the intersection of body practices, language, and the Social to describe concretely the reality of a lived body. His strongly synthetic work brings together Marxist critique, semiotics, Foucaultian discourse analysis, and systems and communications theory to examine those practices that construct the body under late capitalism: habits of work and consumption, the ways we give birth and raise children, socialization, mental and physical healing, reconstructions and contestations of sexuality and gender. Lowe draws upon a wide range of sources, including government and labor studies and statistics, diagnostic and statistical manuals on mental illness, computer manuals, self-help books, and guides to work-related stress disorders, to illustrate the transformation of the body into a nexus of exchange value in postmodern society.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780822316725
  • Publisher: Duke University Press
  • Publication date: 8/28/1995
  • Series: Post-Contemporary Interventions Series
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Pages: 197
  • Product dimensions: 6.12 (w) x 9.24 (h) x 0.64 (d)

Meet the Author

Donald M. Lowe is the author of History of Bourgeois Perception.

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Table of Contents

Acknowledgments
Introduction: Language, Body Practices, and the Social 1
1 Production Practices 17
a Flexible Accumulation and the Labor Market
b Cybernetic Systems and the Labor Process
c The Discipline of Neoclassical Economics
2 Consumption Practices 47
a Product Characteristics and Use Value
b Image in Late-Capitalist Advertising
c The Consumption of Lifestyle
d The Semiotics of Late-Capitalist Commodity
3 The Hegemony of Exchangist Practices 75
4 Social Reproduction Practices 91
a Changing Household and the Politics of "The Family"
b Re-Racialization
c The Body and Bio-Technical Systems
5 Sexuality and Gender Construction 121
a Gender and Sexuality
b Sexual Lifestyle and Late-Capitalist Consumption
c Gender Construction in Late Capitalism
6 Redisciplining the Subject 149
a The Discourse of Psychiatry
b Changing Mental Health Practices
c The Bounds of Psychopathology
Retrospect: The Problematic of the Body in Late Capitalism 173
References 179
Index 193
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