“We observe today not a victory of party, but a celebration of freedom -- symbolizing an end and a beginning .The world is very different now. For man holds in his mortal hands the power to abolish all forms of human poverty and all forms of human life. And yet the same revolutionary beliefs for which our forebears fought are still at issue around the globe -- the belief that the rights of man come not from the generosity of the state, but from the hand of God.” John Fitzgerald Kennedy
“Suffering body” (def.):
- to experience pain, illness, injury, self-torture
- to experience something unpleasant
- to become worse because of being badly affected by something
Bodies move. The “purpose” behind body movements resembles that of social gestures or/and oral language. Hence, bodies move in order to express; an emotion, a desire, an idea. Hence, bodies do move; sometimes just to make a statement.
Bodies also suffer. Hence, bodies that suffer turn into “Suffering Bodies”.
What happens then to the original “body” and the ultimate “purpose”?
“Suffering bodies” may be viewed as the canvas for painful movements, thoughts, feelings, actions and reactions to grow and flourish.
At times, this process may look like an obsession, a compulsion, a torture; something obscure, ill-natured. Not seldom, however, suffering bodies also seem to serve a “higher”, more ritualistic role, depending less on the content and more on the torture’s context.
In Greece, for instances, within the context of the famous orthodox devotion-ritual called “The Virgin-Mary pilgrimage on the Tinos island”, the devotees use to –literally- knell all their way up to the church. Simply put, through voluntary torture and sacrifice people may seek redemption and “catharsis”. Thus, a suffering body may also be seen as the ultimate price that needs to be paid in exchange for the fulfilled miracles.
Furthermore, “suffering” may also stand for “pleasure”. Scarification, painful aesthetic surgeries and starvation for beauty purposes are just a few relevant examples of a limitless list.
At this point one core question emerges; namely, is “suffering” socially, politically, financially and culturally-bound in terms of definition, perception and evaluation?
And if that’s the case, how do “suffering bodies” claim (and/or find) their place in an ever-changing society?