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Tijelo u neoliberalnom kontekstu: analiza praksi samopraćenja tijela i zdravlja


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Greiner, Paula. (2017). Tijelo u neoliberalnom kontekstu: analiza praksi samopraćenja tijela i zdravlja. Diploma Thesis. Filozofski fakultet u Zagrebu, Department of Sociology. [mentor Nikodem, Krunoslav and Špoljar Vržina, Sanja].

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In this Thesis several aspects of digital self-tracking phenomenon in contemporary society are discussed. The work in this Thesis is focused on a critical analysis of self-tracking practices via digital technologies, especially recording and monitoring different aspects of health and using self-tracking technologies in health care. In the first part of the paper I consider historical development of self-tracking and self-tracking via digital technologies, and the notion and the The Quantified Self movement (Lupton 2014d). I discuss different contemporary technologies used for self-tracking: from smart phones and different applications, to wearable devices and sensors that enable constant and rigorous monitoring. These technologies are used in justice systems, in sport and fitness, finances, social interactions, to motivate children, in education, and in medicine and health care. Furthermore, this Thesis focuses on ways in which self and the body are re-conceptualized in a culture where self-tracking via digital technologies is an everyday practice. Self-tracking practices 66 emerge in a society that is individualistic, that values knowledge about oneself, and where constant self-improvement, optimization of self and reinvention are an obligation of every individual. In this context self-tracking technologies enable their users to strive for these ideals, while at the same time encouraging these same ideals. Self-tracking technologies bring a new way of experiencing our body and embodiment. Our bodies are today digitized, and intertwined with technologies that become a prosthesis, or extensions of our body. We experience our body through these technologies, trusting them to inform us about ourselves more than we trust ourselves. Our bodies become more visible than ever, as we can see the finest details of our organs, and inner functioning’s of our bodies. Also, bodies are more quantified than ever, and we experience them through numbers. In the second part of the thesis, using Foucault’s concept of biopower, I analyze in how self-tracking practices are a way of governing the self, or instruments of biopower, as they intensify disciplining of the citizens and controlling over populations in contemporary society. I will discuss how discourses about fitness and dieting, and the construction of ‘‘fatness epidemic’‘ are strategies of biopower because they justify the spread of surveillance over the population and disciplining individuals. Self-tracking technologies establish norms, change the nature of surveillance of the body and society, and perpetuate the ideology of individual responsibility for health. Finally, I discuss the subversive potential of digital self-tracking technologies, and how they can be used to question norms, and to change the focus of self-trackers from trying to have a ‘‘perfect body’‘ to a more experimental view, and to use them to learn something new about their ever-changing bodies.

Item Type: Diploma Thesis
Subjects: Sociology
Departments: Department of Sociology
Supervisor: Nikodem, Krunoslav and Špoljar Vržina, Sanja
Date Deposited: 06 Apr 2018 09:25
Last Modified: 06 Apr 2018 09:25

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