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Demand Seminar: Ted Schatzki; Practices and large social phenomena

Date: 23 June 2014 Time: 4.00-6.00 pm

Venue: FASS Meeting Room 1

Ted Schatzki, University of Kentucky

It is often said that contemporary practice theory (e.g., the work of Shove, Reckwitz, Kemmis, Schatzki) applies only to small social phenomena. This talk explores one way to use practice-theoretical ideas to conceptualize, explain changes in, and specify the dynamics of large phenomena such as markets, education systems, and military-industrial complexes. The talk first analyzes large phenomena la practice theory as bundles and constellations of organized activity and materiality. It then presents ideas on the causal explanation of social phenomena that highlight the significance of action chains in the causal nexus of social life. The idea of such chains is then explored through the versions found in the work of Gabriel Tarde and Bruno Latour. Following this, I explain how chains are part of the practice plenum and thereby pertinent to the dynamics of large phenomena qua bundles and constellations of practices. The final section of the talk explores a key consequence of the complexity of large social phenomena and of the action chain nexes that lead to, maintain, or lie behind changes in them: the need to give overviews of both these nexes and the dynamics of large phenomena. Concepts that are useful for this task are presented.

Event website: http://http://www.demand.ac.uk/events/event/seminar-ted-schatzki-23-june-2014/

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Who can attend: Anyone

 

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