Afterword: Embodiment, Social Order, and the Classification of Humans as Waste
The rise of body studies has, since its development in the early 1980s, been characterized by a resilience and creativity that shows no signs of abating. There are various reasons for this success, but two are especially worthy of note. Socially informed studies of the materialities, capacities and connectedness of body subjects have maintained their capacity to advance disciplinary, cross-disciplinary and inter-disciplinary work on the subject into new agendas [1,2]. Additionally, emerging studies in the field continue to facilitate a sustained interrogation of those residual categories that have helped to define, but also restrict, the reach and ambition of sociology and related disciplines, and advance our understanding of social actions, social relationships and societies. Thus, in contrast to the traditional sociological concern with abstract ‘social facts’ that threatened, at times, to render redundant a focus on the physical constitution of those subject to them , sociologists of embodiment have explored the corporeal consequences of social structures, while also highlighting how the bodily components of agency and interaction were affected by, and became meaningful to people through, such factors as health, illness and dis/ability.
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