Matteo Di Placido

Focus, flexibility, and performativity. The yogic habitus and the neoliberal order

  • Abstract

Informations and abstract

Keywords: yogic habitus, modern postural yoga, ethnography, practice, neoliberalism

In this paper, I discuss the processes through which yoga practitioners come to embody and socially reproduce the ethos of their group and the broader neoliberal order, here understood as a principle of socialization that shapes people’s behaviors in the broadest sense. The paper builds on previous theorizations of the «yogic habitus» via ethnographic observations of Odaka Yoga classes and interviews with yoga teachers to unpack how practitioners acquire the system of dispositions that characterize their school’s praxis and the broader socio-cultural climate in which they are immersed. With particular attention to the class format, I show how certain parts of the practice are conducive to the cultivation of specific yogic dispositions and «symbiotic relationships» with current post-Fordist, neoliberal working requirements based on focus, flexibility, and performativity

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