Allie Kwong speaking to the Society in July 2015 on beliefs about life after death
Details of upcoming talks, to which all are welcome, and other activities are posted here. After each talk, those attending are invited to a self-paying dinner at the Chiu Chow City restaurant across the square from the Hong Kong History Museum, where discussion can be continued informally. For fuller information on the society's activities (including archived abstracts of all talks since 1996) visit the HKAS website.Versions of Candy Yu's presentation on the Manila hostage crisis and Wu Liang's on seafarers can be read on-line in the Hong Kong Anthropologist. The PowerPoint presentation of John Whelpton's January 2012 talk on Christianity in Nepalcan be downloaded from the Nepal page on his site.
Proprioceptive Sociality: Sharing Senses in the Social Worlds of the Severely Disabled
An anthropological talk by Danilyn RUTHERFORD Friday 26 April 2019, 7:00 p.m. Hong Kong Museum of History Lecture Hall, Ground Floor, 100 Chatham Road, Tsim Sha Tsui
The ability to see what another is seeing is the first step towards understanding what another is saying, according to most accounts of normal language development. Likewise, from Hegel to Lacan, a long tradition of western theory has built its account of the emergence of sociality on sight: language, and social life more generally, begins with the visual capacity to imagine the world from another’s point of view. But there are other ways people sense themselves through the senses of another, which come into play in social worlds where people don’t use their minds and bodies in typical ways. In this paper, Dr. Rutherford draws on her research among parents with adolescent children who don’t make eye contact or use conventional signs. She explores some of the ways touch becomes social in these settings, by focusing on “proprioception,” the feeling of one’s own body in space. In their efforts to engage with their severely disabled sons and daughters, parents put a new spin on what George Herbert Mead called the conversation of gestures. Sociality becomes proprioceptive: in sensing the self as another, participants in these interactions develop a sense of the other as a self. In the conclusion, She reflects on what this case can tell us about the poverty of our inherited understandings of how social worlds emerge.
Danilyn RUTHERFORD is President of the Wenner-Gren Foundation for Anthropological Research. She received her bachelor’s degree in biology and history from Stanford University and her doctorate in anthropology from Cornell University, and has taught at Goldsmiths College in London, the University of Chicago, and the University of California, Santa Cruz.
Attendance is free and following the talk, you are invited to a self-paying dinner with the speaker.
Hong Kong Anthropologist
Issues of this on-line journal, with a special emphasis on presenting the work of younger anthropologists, can be downloaded here.