Techniques of the Body

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The phrase “techniques of the body” first entered anthropological discourse as “les techniques du corps,” the title of a 1934 essay by the French scholar Marcel Mauss (1872–1950). A prominent member of Émile Durkheim's Année Sociologique group, Mauss is widely known for his anthropological contributions to magic, sacrifice, and gift exchange. His largely forgotten attention to the social nature of embodied action was rediscovered during the widespread corporeal turn in the social sciences and humanities during the late 1970s and 1980s as an early contribution to the anthropology of the body, bodily practices, and human movement.
Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationThe International Encyclopedia of Anthropology
EditorsHilary Callan
ISBN (Electronic)9781118924396
StatePublished - Sep 5 2018


  • anthropology of the body
  • body
  • Marcel Mauss
  • movement
  • social and cultural anthropology


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