In principio era l’azione. Verso una definizione enattiva dello schema corporeo

Matteo Baccarini


Representing our body has a pivotal role in our experience of the external world. The point, however, is that the corporeity is too much complex to be depicted in a unique framework. Accordingly, authors from both scientific and philosophical literature of the last century share the idea that at least two different bodily representations exist, namely the body schema and the body image. Unfortunately, because of the absence of clear definitions, these two representations have often been treated in an interchangeable way, thus engendering a great confusion in literature. The main attempt to solve such a confusion is provided by Shaun Gallagher’s argument about the conceptual nature of the dualism between body schema and body image. The problem thus is not just a matter of terminology, on the contrary body schema and body image are conceptually different, because they represent different aspects of the body by referring to different processes. Under this aspect Gallagher’s solution is totally convincing, but there exist reasons – theoretical as well as empirical – to assume that the criteria indicated are not consistent. More precisely, in this dissertation we are going to focus our attention on the contribution coming from the field of neuroscience. As a consequence, the standard notion of body schema as postural schema finalized to the accomplishment of movement must be replaced by a new notion of body schema related to the capacity of performing actions.

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ISSN: 1974-918X