April 11, 2005
Hello, my name is Pamela Langley, and I hope to be able to contribute to this site on a semi-regular basis. I am a newbie to moveable type, and "putting myself out there" in general. A formal political moderate, my latent passion for social justice has been reactivated by a sense of increased social apathy and impending environmental crises. I am also generally disgusted by (what I see as) the flawed and short-sighted responses of our current administration.
I am nearly done with my undergraduate studies at Marylhurst University in lovely Portland, OR. I will presumably continue graduate studies somewhere, as I hope to teach. My major area of interest is in English Literature & Writing, but I am also pursuing a minor degree in Cultural & Historical Studies, which is a fancy way of describing history and philosophy. My particular passion is social philosophy, particularly concepts like the bio-political tattoo, corporate capitalism, and the culturalization of nature. My former professor, Dr. Wolf, was keenly influential in nurturing my latent curiousity about the link between thinking, culture, and our socio-political existence.
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Welcome, Pamela! You sound like you'll make in interesting addition. I'm curious about something, though... what in the world is "bio-political tattoo?"
Posted by: george at April 11, 2005 02:01 PM
Glad you asked, George!
Bio-political tattooing is the symptom of ways that our bodies are "marked" (potentially metaphorically) delivering us into the political sphere whether we like it or not.
It is a misty concept, but best described by the visual of the tattoos given to concentration camp victims. Today, bio-political tattoos are more subtle. They are #s assigned to us, or ways that assumptions are made about us based on race, sexual preference, political affiliation, buying choices. We are constantly being known by reductionism--an association of who we are by components of our choices, or vague intersections the government, or corporations, note, which they assume says something about us by which they can make political decisions--such as arrest or putting us on a watch-list.
The famous Italian thinker, Giorgio Agamben refused to enter this country a couple of years back, protesting the new regulations for entry into this country imposed on visitors of particular nationalities. One of the regulations is fingerprinting. Although Agamben was not subject to the fingerprinting (supposedly from a "friendly" country), he objected to the process of being "known" via fingerprint.
Hope that explains the concept. If you do a google search, you will find some interesting commentary about the bio-political tattoo.
Posted by: Pamela at April 11, 2005 07:33 PM