Certain experiences with a strong corporal dimension, such as the amputation of a limb, the loss of a sensorial ability or the onset of a serious organic dysfunction, carry strong implications for the personal histories of the subjects who endure them. Those events imply an ontological violence that goes further than the phenomenological and biological strains involved in the transformation of the body: the cultural descriptions available permeate that transformation and that violence. But, on the other hand, this sort of experience blatantly de-authorizes a constructivism which, while fighting the power of modern essentialist ideologies of “biology is destiny”, neglected, often to the limit, dimensions of existence where the lived body assumes irredeemable centrality. Grounded on a long ethnographic account of the experiences of blind people in Portugal, strifing with ambivalent sociopolitical implications, these questions will be summoned through the notion of “anguish of corporal transgression”




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