Doing Gender Differently? The Embodiment of Gender Norms as Between Permanence and Transformation

Research output: Chapter/Conference proceedingChapterAcademic


The aim of this chapter is to investigate how gender norms enter human bodily experience. My focus is not on the explicit ways in which social norms affect and constitute our relation to knowledge and the world but how these epistèmes become embodied, that is, become an assimilated part of our bodily experience. Gender, as a specific social norm, is of particular interest for a number of reasons. First, gender structures all domains of human social life: From matters of family, education, profession, and public life. Second, gender is a norm that structures life not only in explicit ways (e.g., when one is directly addressed as or identifies oneself assertively as female, male, or other) but also in implicit ways and thereby operatively defines our sense of normality. Third, gender norms typically mirror existing power relations insofar as they represent forms of socio-political organization. Gender is not a norm that we are necessarily forced to obey or even naturally identify with, but it remains incorporated and acquired within concrete and repeated bodily experiences and practices. necessarily forced to obey or even natura
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationPolitical Phenomenology. Experience, Ontology, Episteme
Editors Thomas Bedorf, Steffen Herrmann
Place of PublicationNew York and London
Number of pages25
ISBN (Print)9780429259852
Publication statusPublished - 2020

Publication series

SeriesRoutledge Research in Phenomenology


Dive into the research topics of 'Doing Gender Differently? The Embodiment of Gender Norms as Between Permanence and Transformation'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this