Five Things I Like About My Carcass
|Bit better today. Zuzu at Feministe opened a thread in which readers were asked to state at least five things about ourelves and our bodies which we loved. Sage and various others obliged. At first I thought this was a dubious exercise, especially as many of the answers tended to focus on physical or aesthetic attributes. I am suspicious of the idea that we need to find our bodies beautiful in order not to hate ourselves as people. All physical things are necessarily transient and to me, to say “I have nice legs” generally implies a positive comparison either against other women or against the current cultural measure of what nice legs are like – cultural measures that as feminists, we should be trying to ignore.|
I then went to The Gimp Parade and decided I was thinking about this the wrong way. Blue offers a characteristically sensible discussion of this, links to the excellent As The Tumour Turns and offers her own answers. Which in turn has inspired Mark Siegel, who hit the nail on the head;
Those of us with physical disabilities have a tendency to internalize some pretty negative messages from society regarding our appearance. We learn to regard our bodies as freakish, deformed, or simply embarrassing. The concepts of disability and beauty rarely intersect in our popular imagination.Indeed. It is a similar mechanism with non-disabled women of course, who are often programmed with ideas of perfection to which they cannot possibly measure up to - not because they have any impairment, but just because they are human beings as opposed to architypes. But we all have things about our bodies which are attractive or otherwise enjoyable. We are none of us so elevated that we don't live in the physical world or lack appreciation for physical things.
As you can tell, brain fog and a tendency to think too hard aren't doing me many favours this week.
So here's mine, all physical stuff:
I could only think of five, but I'm quite chuffed with my own immodesty given the week I've had.