Cosmetic Practices: The Intersection with Aesthetics and Medicine

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According to Shusterman, somaesthetics is as an aesthetic-ethical art of living, a practice devoted to living an attractively good life. So the aesthetic experience is not limited to art, but concerns also everyday life; consequently we can explain cosmetic practices (from make-up and hair-styling to plastic surgery) not only as making beauty, but also as feeling beauty, as a feeling better with oneself and with others. When beyond aesthetics purpose there is a functional purpose, cosmetic practices meet the medical science. This essay focuses on Somaesthetics in relation to high culture and popular culture. Firstly, some artistic practices are examined, which operate onto or into the body with either prosthesis or medical and surgical techniques (Stelarc, Madam Orlan, Mona Hatoum); then, shifting to the level of popular culture, some cosmetic practices are overviewed on the border between Medicine and Aesthetics. In both cases Somaesthetics can help to rediscover the psycho-corporeal unity, and in the field of cosmetic practices its message can be spread among the mass and, as the historical tradition confirms, it can mend the gap that exists in the medical and aesthetic fields.
Lingua originaleEnglish
Titolo della pubblicazione ospiteAesthetic Experience and Somaesthetics
Numero di pagine18
Stato di pubblicazionePublished - 2018


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