To conclude the discussion of breath and breathing in the foregoing contributions, this comment sets out from a critical perspective on embodiment. For a being that breathes out and in, should we not add to embodiment its complement of vaporisation? Breath, after all, is fluid, animate and fundamental to human conviviality. While it can temporarily be put on hold, breath cannot be contained. That is why bodily breathing is unlike the ventilation of buildings. Moreover, breathing in and breathing out are dissimilar movements which cannot be reversed. This presents particular problems for those with breathing difficulties, above all in societies where speech, carried on the outbreath, is modelled on print, and where thought is attributed to a self whose powers of cognition transcend bodily experience. In place of the complementarity of self and body, we posit the soul as a vortex in which breathing, thinking, speech and song all flow into one another.
|Number of pages||10|
|Journal||Body & Society|
|Early online date||27 Apr 2020|
|Publication status||Published - 1 Jun 2020|