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A feminist embodied ethics of social media use: Corporeal vulnerability and relational care practices

journal contribution
posted on 2023-05-26, 04:34 authored by Kim ToffolettiKim Toffoletti, H Thorpe, R Olive, A Pavlidis, C Moran
This article adopts a feminist relational orientation to investigate the care practices that women develop when producing and engaging with body-focussed content online. We propose and argue for an embodied ethics of social media use to understand women’s enactments and exchanges as they relate to shared corporeal concerns. Drawing on qualitative interview data, and using Judith Butler’s understanding of corporeal vulnerability as the basis for mutual recognition, this article investigates social actors’ ethical orientations towards, and attempts at, improving the collective experiences of women in the context of Instagram use for physical activity. We identify several ways in which exercising women practice an embodied ethics of care on Instagram, including sharing unedited images of themselves, not judging others’ bodies, awareness-raising and supporting others. By conceptualising women’s everyday social media encounters as an embodied ethical practice, this study develops new theoretical insights to understand women’s sharing of body-focussed content online.

History

Journal

New Media and Society

Pagination

146144482311715-146144482311715

Location

London, Eng.

ISSN

1461-4448

eISSN

1461-7315

Language

en

Publisher

SAGE Publications