The Book of Skin / Edition 1

The Book of Skin / Edition 1

by Steven Connor
     
 

ISBN-10: 0801488931

ISBN-13: 9780801488931

Pub. Date: 10/15/2003

Publisher: Cornell University Press

Skin, Steven Connor argues, has never been more visible. The Book of Skin explores the multiple functions of the skin in the cultures of the West. In this vividly illustrated book, Connor draws on evidence from a variety of sources including literary and other forms of public and private writing, especially medical texts, as well as painting, photography, and film,

Overview

Skin, Steven Connor argues, has never been more visible. The Book of Skin explores the multiple functions of the skin in the cultures of the West. In this vividly illustrated book, Connor draws on evidence from a variety of sources including literary and other forms of public and private writing, especially medical texts, as well as painting, photography, and film, folklore and popular song.Because of its newfound visibility, skin has never been at once so manifest and so in jeopardy as it is today. This dilemma becomes evident, in Connor's view, if we examine how skin is displayed and manipulated as a site of inscription. In order to trace our culture's anxious concerns with the materiality and mortality of skin, Connor's analysis ranges from the human body itself to photography, from Medieval leprosy, Renaissance flaying, and eternal syphilis to cosmetics, plastic surgery, and skin cancers.Connor examines the chromatics of skin color and pigmentation, blushing, suntanning, paleness, darkening, tattooing, cutting, the Turin shroud, the Mummy, and the Invisible Man. He also offers engaging explanations for why particular colors are ascribed to feelings and conditions such as green for envy, purple for rage, and yellow for cowardice. Connor's insights into the obvious and yet unfamiliar terrain of the skin and its place in Western culture ameliorates the intensities and attenuations of touch in cultural history. The Book of Skin bears out James Joyce's claim that "modern man has an epidermis rather than a soul."

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780801488931
Publisher:
Cornell University Press
Publication date:
10/15/2003
Edition description:
New Edition
Pages:
304
Product dimensions:
6.13(w) x 9.25(h) x (d)

Table of Contents

Note on Editions and Photo Acknowledgements6
Pregression: A Skin That Walks7
1Complexion9
2Exposition49
3Disfiguring73
4Impression95
5Stigmata119
6Off-Colour147
7Unction178
8Aroma211
9Itch227
10The Light Touch257
References283
Index299

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