The Mirror



In this chapter I return to the other characteristic of the ‘anatomising urge’, the mirror, which is depicted along with the scalpel in representations of Anatomia. Where the scalpel indicates the pervasiveness of the desire to be incisive, on the body and in the formation of knowledge, the mirror indicates our desire to know ourselves, to be self-reflexive, to have a coherent idea of our own identity. Thus the scalpel and the mirror appear to be very different sorts of tools, not obviously connected to each other. The scalpel seems to be connected with death and disease, while the mirror is connected with life; the scalpel with depth, the mirror with surface; the scalpel with analysis, and the mirror with appearance. However, in the next two chapters I want to show how the scalpel and the mirror are closely related to each other, both in the dominant construction of the body and in the prevalent tradition of knowledge.


Organisation Theory Black People Female Orgasm Cartesian Dualism Marginalise Body 
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© Karen Dale 2001

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