6. Bodiliness

The Body Beyond the Body: Social, Material and Spiritual Dimensions of Bodiliness

  1. Frances E. Mascia-Lees
  1. Terence Turner

Published Online: 14 JUL 2011

DOI: 10.1002/9781444340488.ch6

A Companion to the Anthropology of the Body and Embodiment

A Companion to the Anthropology of the Body and Embodiment

How to Cite

Turner, T. (2011) Bodiliness, in A Companion to the Anthropology of the Body and Embodiment (ed F. E. Mascia-Lees), Wiley-Blackwell, Oxford, UK. doi: 10.1002/9781444340488.ch6

Editor Information

  1. Rutgers University, USA

Author Information

  1. University of Chicago, USA

Publication History

  1. Published Online: 14 JUL 2011
  2. Published Print: 15 APR 2011

ISBN Information

Print ISBN: 9781405189491

Online ISBN: 9781444340488



  • bodiliness, body beyond the body - social, material and spiritual dimensions of bodiliness;
  • Kayapo people of Central Brazil - no word or customary locution in language for “the body”;
  • human body, elementary unit - of cosmic hierarchy;
  • body schema, material content and spirit form - life process as dialectic of form and content;
  • speaking of human bodily form - and its relation to subjective identity, spirit or perspective;
  • pertinent set of Kayapo ideas - role of skin for human babies;
  • social production of bodily form - “social skin” and “social body”;
  • body as microcosm - bodiliness and cosmos, of space-time;
  • ritual masks - artificial embodiments of sacred power;
  • bodily adornment - in age of inter-ethnic coexistence


This chapter contains sections titled:

  • Introduction

  • Body Schema as Material Content and Spirit Form: Life Process as Dialectic of Form and Content

  • Gross and Subtle Anatomy: Flesh, Blood, Skin, Hair, Senses and Extremities

  • The Social Production of Bodily Form: “Social Skin” and “Social Body”

  • Body as Microcosm: Bodiliness and Cosmos as Formative Processes of Space-Time

  • Ritual Bodies: Feathers, Animal Identities, and Masks

  • Objectification, Deobjectification, and the Changing Relations of Body and Spirit

  • Conclusion: Bodily Form as Spirit and Agent; Embodiment as Power

  • References