The upright posture
A breakdown of physical well-being is alarming; it turns our attention to functions which on good days we take for granted. A healthy person does not ponder about breathing, seeing, walking. Infirmities of breath, sight, or gait, startle us. Among the patients consulting a psychiatrist, there are some who can no longer master the seemingly banal arts of standing and walking. They are not paralyzed; but, under certain conditions, they cannot, or feel as if they cannot, keep themselves upright. They tremble and quiver. Incomprehensible terror takes away their strength. Sometimes a minute change in the physiognomy of the frightful situation may restore their strength. Obviously, upright posture is not confined to the technical problems of locomotion. It contains a psychological element. It is pregnant with a meaning not exhausted by the physiological tasks of meeting the forces of gravity and keeping the equilibrium.
Straus, E. (1966)., The upright posture, in M. Natanson (ed.), Essays in phenomenology, Den Haag, Nijhoff, pp. 164-192.
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