Jurisprudence of the Body

Jurisprudence of the Body will bring together a range of perspectives to consider fundamental questions about law and the place of the body within it. Healthcare, and more recently health law, has long been animated by discussions of particular bodies; whether disordered, diseased, or disabled. This Current Topic aims to uncover the fundamental assumptions that underpin such classificatory regimes. This will be achieved through a mix of perspectives which concern themselves with embodiment, including how bodies are shaped by institutional contexts. Medical practitioners do not merely respond to healthcare issues, but also create them through their understandings of ‘normality’ and ‘fixing’. Thus bodies cannot be understood outside of their medical and legal contexts, nor can these medical and legal contexts be easily disaggregated when assessing the accessibility of rights or support for such bodies. The contributors to these panels will address these interrelated contexts, delving into power dynamics and opening them up to challenge.

Topics for consideration will include:

  • The institutions of healthcare as the sites at which bodies are constituted;
  • The types of bodies that struggle on the margins of the healthcare system;
  • How social, legal, and political theories have both engaged the body and altered how we debate bodies


Chris Dietz (C.P.Dietz@leeds.ac.uk), Michael Thomson  (M.A.Thomson@leeds.ac.uk) and Mitchell Travis (M.Travis@leeds.ac.uk)

To discuss the panel or to submit an abstract, contact m.travis@leeds.ac.uk