This is my original translation of the first two paragraphs from Kiyokazu Washida’s essay “The Plastics” as published in Nature Interface magazine. I believe this to be the first time this is being presented in English.
It is far from normal to say that human beings are natural. Inside the body, humans are carried away by metal bolts, that is to say, the attachment of an artificial limb or a heart with an artificial valve…Artificiality is supporting the activities of the human body. There is the injection of nutrients or the ingestion of medicinal capsules that are passed through the internal organs. Contact lenses and false teeth are also examples of things equipped to the body’s surface.
There is the hole of a cavity or the application of a white filling for a cracked tooth. One’s teeth are not completely pure white because of the excess of food or tobacco stains which prominently lessen the whiteness of one’s teeth. Especially in X-ray photography, even though one’s teeth turn to gray, the whiteness of the filling completely stands out. From an objective perspective, the identity of attacks on one’s “foreign body” are passed along in this way.
This is a translation from Nature Interface Vol. 6. The original essay can be read in its entirety (in Japanese) here: Nature Interface Vol. 6 (Washida, Kiyokazu – The Plastics)
Photo by LiminalMike