Ocean skins, sea water skins

Ocean skins, sea water skins

The skin, this “first birth of our senses and at the same time our most extensive means of communication with the outside” (Wolff-Quenot, 2001) is what keeps us in touch with the elements, a constant dialogue between our inner and inner organs. external environment. Because it sensitizes environments, it plays a key role in our representations and perceptions. Nature can enter the body like an ocean that penetrates its pores (Andrieu, 2019, 40), its interstices, folds and holes, then leaves a mark there with cracks, discoloration or burn marks. According to ASM, the ocean acts as a disruptor in the skin microbiota, which can lead to certain infections and pathologies. This community of living microorganisms, which are different on each skin before swimming, then become identical to all individuals after being immersed in the same ocean space. Therefore, seawater changes the surface of the body, softens wounds and their crusts, perhaps reminding the skin through this liquid imitation that it contains almost the same salt as the salt of most oceans. Thus, our humanity is closely related to the marine element, as awakened by the fetal body bathed in a “maternal envelope” (Cupa, 2006) filled with amniotic fluid close to the composition of seawater (Pelizzani, Tovaglieri, 2005, Schirrer, 2015). ).

And it is healing salt water, an ocean medicine that man seeks to cure his ailments. Immersion of the body in watery matter, absorption of an element by the body, or application of marine derivatives to the skin refer to archetypes of regeneration, erasure if not immortality. As the immune system catches the body in the piloerection reflex, diving into an icy sea to strengthen the skin, then waking up through the skin, puts the body to sleep rather than everyday life. Thus, the ocean, which damages the skin, can also heal it thanks to the various organisms in it, such as plankton or algae. Living water, resonating with the living body, offers it a certain hope of harmony with the cosmos of which it is a part.

Seawater has been used for centuries in various cultural areas, for healing and body modification, such as the Chuk Islands in Micronesia, where bathing in the sea before sunrise has great benefits, especially for soothing abrasive treatments. labia minora of young girls as part of the beautification of the female genitalia (Ledesma 2000, 57). These water elementals are also endowed with a certain form of magic that allows for hybridization between human and non-human, thanks to a power of transformation whereby the skin becomes “smooth as a dolphin”, as noted by Artaud. In his work on the fishermen of Banc d’Arquin in Mauritania (2018, 269), or as some surfers say, he covered himself with scales (Sayeux, Sirost, Andrieu, 2021). This is a common imagination found in many works of fiction, such as literature the sea As in traditional fairy tales by Michelet (1935) or in many forms of art and culture, to name just one. So, from the fish woman found in the Neolithic carved Honshan jade, from the mermaid stories to the reinterpretation of the Poseidon myth in the film. Aquaman Published in 2018 by James Wan, the hybridization of humans and aquatic animals due to immersion in seawater seems to have crossed eras and continents. The fertile imagination that this element carries within it, as Bachelard so aptly describes, is of life as well as death, birth, and end, as salt waters may indicate.

Thematic issue coordinator
Anne-Sophie Sayeux

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Deadline for submission of articles: February 20, 2023
The publication of the issue is planned for the summer of 2023

Expected contributors
Researchers, young researchers and doctoral students in the humanities and social sciences

Editorial Committee
Stefan Heas (Director)
Christine Berge
Alexandre Dubuis

Scientific Committee
Bernard Andrieu; Gregory Beriet; Christian Bromberger; Philippe Charlier; Adeline Grand Clement; Camille Gravelier; Arnaud Halloy; Claire Lahuerta; Bertrand Lancon; David LeBreton; Annick Le Guerre; Philippe Lyotard; Christophe A. Marquette; Pierre Philippe-Meden; Irene Salas; Juliette Smeralda; Ivan Ricordel

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