Bernadette Wegenstein – Getting Under the Skin: Body and Media Theory

Bernadette Wegenstein

The MIT Press – ISBN 0262232472
The concept of disembodiment disseminated by computer networks has affected as a virus our perception of what is physical. The physicality is something different now, instinctively considered more precious, more related to the time lapse we experience it and in the end more deeply enjoyed in its own organic and synthetic forms. The ocean of body representations that surrounds us in the twenty-first century has definitevely altered the human body (as a category) perception. But this hasn’t happened suddenly. This text is a deep research that investigates extensively the body as an entity that dramatically changed and influenced contemporary society and culture. Its fragmentation, holism and mediation have defined a completely new concept of body that includes its current many different internal and external relationships, as the here analyzed architectural interactions and ratios. The senses, the skin, the body movements are incredibly enhanced in the media, as triggers of attention, contributing at the same time to the overwhelming multiplication of body immaterial pictures that easily enter our minds. So, coupling with the author’s definition of the body as a medium, will the body itself end to be the place of an endless collective performance, played in the streets everyday as the new social code, or will it be the node of the individual networks eternally connected? Touch the first skin on a screen you’ll see and you’d figure out your answer.