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Selected Works

Carolyn Ellis

1998

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I Hate My Voice: Coming To Terms With Bodily Stigmas, Carolyn Ellis Dec 1997

I Hate My Voice: Coming To Terms With Bodily Stigmas, Carolyn Ellis

Carolyn Ellis

This article presents a narrative, autoethnographic, theoretical account of the public and private negotiation of “minor bodily stigmas,” which are mild physical “imperfections” that make us fear we stand out and might be rejected. To examine the situated complexity of stigmatized identity, I tell a story that shows concrete interactional details of an episode in which minor bodily stigmas evolved into a significant topic of conversation between strangers. My personal narrative explores the felt experience of minor bodily stigmas from the perspective of the experiencing and interacting holder. Thus, my work problematizes Erving Goffman's sociological approach to stigmas, which ...