Body politics: identity (24 June, 1, 8, 15 July 2024)

WorkshopBody politics: identities
DateMondays 24 June, 1, 8, 15 July 2024 19.00 - 20.30
LocationOnline via zoom

Body politics: identity

Yoga in the modern world is moulded by processes of religion, nationalism, neoliberalism and technological change. The body of blood, flesh and tears interacts with and is constituted by church and state. In other words, yoga as a bodily practice is acted on and influenced by the body politic. This four-week course examines key processes that are thus expressed through the body and shape the body.
Week one explores technologies of the body, sometimes expressed as technologies of the self, and articulates the concept of ‘progress’ that drives much practice and its shadows, such as abuse of power and bodily abuse. Week two examines ideology and the body, such as neoliberalism, spiritual materialism, identity, race and globalisation. The third week grounds these more conceptual frames in concrete case studies by looking at ethical activity as (i) yoga and Indian nationalism, (ii) muscular Christianity and (iii) the perfect wife and perfect mother. The final session draws together these processes that cultivate perfect bodies and shape the identities of yoga practitioners.
The course is offered through four live online interactive hour and a half sessions, preceded by short introductory videos. The lecture component of the sessions but not discussions will be recorded and made available to registered participants to review for one week after the live session.