What if a face is marked by ‘disfigurement’? How does this impact our sense of self and our relation to others? Discover how we not only have a face, but do our face.
About Doing Faces
Consider losing your nose to cancer, and having it replaced by a prosthetic device. Or imagine that your best friend’s smile is radically transformed due to a severe burning incident. What happens if a face is marked by ‘disfigurement’? What does this imply for our sense of self, for our relation to others, for how we inhabit the world?
Tonight, social philosopher Gili Yaron will share her insights, discussing her qualitative study into the experiences of people who have lost part(s) of their faces. Rather than considering the face as something we have, she suggests to think of the face as something we do. What does that mean: doing our faces? And how does this approach help us understand our communicating faces?
About Gili Yaron
Gili Yaron trained as a social philosopher (thesis cum laude, 2009), and proceeded to pursue a PhD in Medical Humanities at Maastricht University, the Netherlands in 2011. She defended her Thesis, entitled Doing Facial Difference: The Lived Experiences of Individuals with Facial Limb Absence, in 2018. Yaron’s research interests include the embodiment of illness and disability, the everyday use of medical technologies, comprehensive approaches to health, and qualitative methods. She has been affiliated with Zuyd Hogeschool, the Netherlands Cancer institute-Antoni van Leeuwenhoek, and Maastricht University’s Living Lab Sustainable Care. Gili Yaron currently works as a senior researcher at the lectorate ‘Living Well with Dementia’, Windesheim University of Applied Sciences.
About series ‘Communicating Faces’
Human beings are incredibly skilled at facial recognition and communication, empathizing with each other through the face. In fact, we are so attuned to faces, we see them everywhere - even in inanimate objects. But usually, we are not very aware of this body part of ourselves. Until COVID-19. More than ever, we had to focus on other people’s faces and interpret their facial expressions, mediated through our screens. More than ever, we were confronted with our own face, and the way it looks, moves, and feels. In this series we invite you to explore together the meaning and relevance of the face. How can we best understand our communicating faces? What is it that our faces tell us about who we are, what we do and how we relate to each other? And what role do (implicit) sociocultural norms and biases - think of race or gender - play in making up our face?