A Biomythography in the Making

Matthew Kohrman

in Bodies of Difference

Published by University of California Press

Published in print May 2005 | ISBN: 9780520226449
Published online May 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780520935563 | DOI:
A Biomythography in the Making

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This chapter examines the biomythography of Deng Pufang, focusing on his role in the formation of the China Disabled Persons' Federation (CDPF). It explores how Pufang's corporeality has been scripted into hagiographic texts, and highlights the ways in which his body has been made knowable and has been vested with the power to speak with the force of history. The chapter investigates why people attribute such sociopolitical significance to Deng's paraplegia and to his embodiment of canji more generally, and suggests that the attribution stems from Deng and his Federation associates having carefully deployed and packaged his persona, particularly his somatic presence.

Keywords: Deng Pufang; CDPF; paraplegia; sociopolitical significance; canji; biomythography

Chapter.  11421 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Medical Anthropology

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