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Boyle is especially interesting in her discussion of the Renaissance concern with abnormality; not only did "strange corporeality" (53) -- no hands, too many hands, missing digits, extra digits -- preoccupy innovators such as Ambroise Pare (the creator of the artificial hand), but so did it take on new meaning according to encounters with peoples of the New World.
The book immediately began to matter to me because it asks questions that will preoccupy anyone who loves art but who also wants to live a politically committed life.
The tragedies in New York and the Washington area illustrate how petty the angers, frustrations and grudges that can preoccupy us really are.