People Made of Glass: The Collapsing Temporalities of Chronic Conditions

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An increasing number of people worldwide are living with chronic conditions
that have an aspect of bodily fragility as part of the condition or as an effect
of treatment. In this article, I explore the temporal experience of bodily
fragility and the particularities of consciousness states among people with the
chronic condition osteogenesis imperfecta (OI) in Denmark. My aim is
threefold. First, my goal is to give an insight into life with OI, a rare and
rarely studied condition. Second, I shed light on bodily fragility, a theme that
lives in the shadows of other analytical foci in anthropology. Third, I will
contribute to the anthropological understanding of the connection among
body, physical environment, and consciousness. I argue that the lifeworlds of
people with OI are haunted by mental and bodily memories and fearful future
scenarios, which makes the past and the future collapse into the present.
Original languageEnglish
JournalAnthropology of Consciousness
Issue number1
Pages (from-to)7-32
Publication statusPublished - 19 Mar 2021

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