Margaret Morse on Wed, 15 Feb 2012 09:43:15 +0100 (CET)

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Re: <nettime> Sex Work and Consent at @transmediale

Dear John,

I agree that the mind and the body are flowing and intimately
intertwined. I resist the notion that it means that there is no
difference at any level and that everything just flows. When I
distinguished writing "inane academic" papers from sex work or
prostitution, I was thinking of the effects of daily physical effort
that tests the body's endurance; even wealthy athletes are not spared
the effects of such abuse. i grew up around people who were laborers;
when I attend my highschool reunion, I can tell the laborers by how
greatly they have aged compared to those with less arduous lives. It
may be hard to erase the effects of poverty and malnutrition from
burdensome labor; nonetheless, the corporeal marks of being "working
class" are unmistakeable. I think it is only consistent and fair to
concede that people who labor with their bodies are likely to suffer
other and different long term effects than someone who suffers from
(his own) bad writing. I would concede the respect I as an academic I
owe to people who labor to prostitutes as well. To be honest, I wonder
how much the stigma attached to prostitution that makes it free game
for disrespect has shaped this thread on nettime.

Living precariously is hard and certainly involves intellectual as
well as physical deprivation, whatever is going on neurally. I also
respect my colleagues who (barely) live this way and nonetheless make
unique contributions to their community. I also know (perhaps like
Carl and Morlock) that writing involves corporeal suffering. For
many years I wrote standing up, but that became too hard. Recently
I finally got a special stool with a mobile seat . Bingo! Thinking,
whatever anguish it causes, is a pleasures that make me feel alive. It
is NOT being able to think, e.g. depression, that is truly painful, at
least for me.

Susanne recommended a book by Catherine Malabou--What Shall We Do with
Our Brain?-- that I find provocative. It makes me responsible for
shaping my brain and forging new pathways that do not simply allow
me to better fit into the expectations of academic institutions,
corporations or global capitalism. Rather than passively accept
genetic proclivities to deprssion and late onset dementia, I feel like
becoming an artist shaping my own capacity for thought and action.

Sorry if I have still missed or misunderstood your point. I am hoping
you understand mine.

Best wishes,

On Feb 12, 2012, at 11:03 AM, John Hopkins wrote:


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