Chapter

Disciplining Responsibility: Labor and Gender

Jarrett Zigon

in “HIV Is God's Blessing”

Published by University of California Press

Published in print December 2010 | ISBN: 9780520267626
Published online May 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780520948327 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1525/california/9780520267626.003.0011
Disciplining Responsibility: Labor and Gender

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Prayer, confession, obshchenie, and managing one's emotional world may all be vital to the process of making normal persons, but ultimately the Church-run program recognizes that a normal person must also contribute to society. This chapter explores two aspects of the therapeutic process closely related to the idea of a normal life at the Church as a contribution to society: a normal life in relation to work and a normal life in relation to family, particularly in terms of relations between genders. Both of these aspects hold a primary place in the therapeutic process. It is not enough that a normal person can engage in open sociality with the appropriate range of emotions, or work diligently while showing responsibility for both themself and others. A normal person must also do these normal activities in the right spaces and while presenting himself properly. These spaces and self-presentations are often very specifically gendered, upholding Orthodox institutional views of gender and marriage as well as a long history of this traditional divide. This conservative gendered divide is being worked onto the bodies of rehabilitants at The Mill and has also come to characterize the lifestyles and division of labor of the increasingly more numerous neoliberal subjects in contemporary Russia.

Keywords: labor; gender; discipline; responsibility; therapeutic process

Chapter.  8357 words. 

Subjects: Medical Anthropology

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