Organizer: Natalia Volkova, graduate of MSSES, lecturer in MARСH.
The human condition during the development of technology is described by Rousseau's expression «one is carrying oneself, so to speak, entirely with one». This expression gains additional significance with the development of information technology, since it means not only persons or their clothes, but also all possible «small technologies» (following John Urry) that expand their private space. Such technologies can be space-based when they provide remote access, for example, via communication devices (like pagers, mobile phones, headphones), as well as be time-based due to the increasing memory of electronic devices that store not only photos and evidence of the past, but also mark the future through calendar entries or health apps, which plan for you the number of steps that is better to do during the day.
If spatial or temporal expansion in the past is observed in the sociology, the expansion into the field of the future is usually left to economists, politicians or cultural scientists. This is a paradox: neither the strong program of cultural sociology, based on the concept of culture of Durkheim, nor the program of cultural research based on the Simmel's concepts of interaction and individual life, are discussing the futurity. Nevertheless, it is the future where social actions of persons are oriented, based on their rational goal or values.
But even if there is a discussion on futurity in sociology of culture, the restoration of the future in its rights will give rise to the new and even more complex issues. If the futurity is associated with temporal expansion, will this expansion be individual or social? If we define culture as information, the development and distribution of which depends on technologies, including individual one, which each of us «carries with us», should we return to the question of the possibility of individual culture? Or should we ask, what place will the individual extensions/ expansions take in sociology of culture, and where does the line between culture and individual extensions go?
Key speakers:Celia Lury
, Professor, Director, Centre for Interdisciplinary Methodologies, Univercity of Warwick