The Strange Body

  • Claudia Matus
Part of the Curriculum Studies Worldwide book series (CSWW)


As the figure of a person occupying a space not of her own, the figure of the stranger appears to represent the one who does not belong (Ahmed, 2000). In this chapter, I explore on how ideas of the s trange body are produced in research studies and how these notions affect the ways we inhabit institutional spaces and times. To do this I explore on the discourses presented in research studies about international students and the ways they provide the contours by which to live and experience space and time. In this chapter, I present a discussion on the notion of the graduate international student as constructed by research studies in which the production of deficient subjects is a way to enforce the ideal notion of a person occupying a particular space and time in US educational institutions. Here, it is important to pay attention to the roles and operations of a disembodied identity that is produced in research studies. By disembodiment I mean the detachment of the body from the particularities of time and space (Bordo, 1986).1 As bodies in motion are represented in research as lacking and culturally deficient, the image of the subject is of someone who can be read as neutral, absolute, and detached; detached from her/his “original space” and her/his tempos.


International Student International Movement Domestic Student Research Discourse Institutional Space 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.


  1. 1.
    Also see Anastasia Christou (2011). Narrating lives in (e)motion: embodiment, belongingness and displacement in diasporic spaces of home and return. Emotion, Space and Society, 4, pp. 249–257CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. Joyce Davidson and Christine Milligan (2004). Embodying emotion sensing space: introducing emotional geographies. Social & Cultural Geography, 5(4), pp. 523–532.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. 2.
    See Stephen Ball (2012). Performativity, commodification and commitment: an I-spy guide to the Neoliberal University. British Journal of Education Studies, 60(1), pp. 17–28.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. 3.
    See an interesting discussion on how time becomes “real” and how we come to know it and the effects of how time, real time is communicated. Tung-Hui Hu (2012). Real time/zero time. Discourse, 34(2-3), pp. 163–184.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. 4.
    More on the production of particular subjectivities, sexuality, and space in Judith Halberstam (2005). In a Queer Time and Space. Transgender Bodies, Subcultural Lives. New York and London: New York University PressGoogle Scholar
  6. Eithne Luibheid (2002). Entry Denied. Controlling Sexuality at the Border. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota PressGoogle Scholar
  7. Catherine J. Nash (2010). Trans geographies, embodiment, and experience. Gender, Place & Culture. A Journal of Feminist Geography, 17(5), 579–595CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. Gulsum Baydar (2012). Sexualised productions of space. Gender, Place & Culture: A Journal of Feminist Geography, 19(6), pp. 699–706CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. Marlene Spanger (2013). Gender performances as spatial acts: (fe)male Thai migrant sex workers in Denmark. Gender, Place & Culture: A Journal of Feminis Geography, 20(1), pp. 37–52.CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Claudia Matus 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  • Claudia Matus

There are no affiliations available

Personalised recommendations