Ageing, Identity and the Materialities of Wound Care

Monday, 11 July 2016: 14:30
Location: Hörsaal 42 (Main Building)
Oral Presentation
Mary MADDEN, University of Leeds, United Kingdom
The study of material culture explores how inanimate objects work and how they are worked with in carrying out social functions, regulating social relations and giving symbolic meaning to human activity. Drawing on data generated in semi-structured interviews with patients exploring outcomes and impacts of undergoing treatment for leg and foot ulcers undertaken as part of a UK National Institute for Health Research funded study, this paper  explores the use of footwear, bandaging and hosiery, not only in clinical  functional terms, as a treatment supporting or hindering healing, but also as part of the means by which older people receiving treatment for two of the most common complex, chronic wounds, leg ulcers and foot ulcers, negotiate and understand their embodied selves in everyday life.  The paper discusses some of the ways in which footwear, hosiery and bandaging play a role in controlling the boundaries between the private (wounded and potentially socially unacceptable smelly, leaky, embodied), self and the public presentation of the ageing self.