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Message posted on 02/02/2023

CFP Nordic STS 2023: Animal Infrastructures: Multispecies Technologies of Domestication and Exclusion

Hi all!

Please find below our call for papers for the 2023 Nordic STS conference held in Oslo between 7-9th June. We're accepting abstracts of 250 words for our open panel on animal infrastructures.

Animal Infrastructures: Multispecies Technologies of Domestication and Exclusion Does technology domesticate animals or do animals domesticate technology? STS scholars have taken the concept of domestication beyond the biological, reframing it as an adaptive process surrounding people's acceptance, rejection, and use of technology. Yet various forms of infrastructure and technology also interact with nonhuman animals. Through these interactions, animals are excluded from some spaces and invited into others, all the while utilizing and adapting human-built technology for their own needs. In this session we will explore how concepts of domestication, domesticity, and the 'home' relate to actors beyond the human. Domesticating animals in the home has been traditionally understood through our relationships with pets and livestock. Nonhumans, however, make their homes in all manner of ways, entering so-called 'human infrastructures' and using human-built technologies in their homemaking practices. We therefore argue that our understanding and definitions of 'home' and 'domestication' should be expanded to incorporate these animal actors and the technology they interact with. By doing so, we challenge the problematic conceptualisation of the domestic and wild binary. We also highlight the question of nonhuman agency, including its centrality to the question of how infrastructures and technologies are both used and become users in domestication processes. What technologies facilitate the making of homes by nonhumans? What happens when infrastructures of nonhuman exclusion break down? How can we conceptualise both socially and materially an expanded definition of 'home'? We welcome papers from STS scholars, geographers, historians, and members of other disciplines who examine the relationship between nonhuman animals and technology. Papers could address the following non-exhaustive themes:

  • The maintenance and breakdown of animal infrastructures
  • Animal-infrastructure networks
  • Nonhuman agency in human spaces
  • Case studies of nonhuman domestication practices
  • Material lives of animal infrastructures
  • Avian homes and domestication
  • Underwater homes and domestication
  • Urban environments and animals
  • Institutional knowledges and technologies
  • Infrastructural spatialities and transgressions Please send abstracts to and by March 1st 2023.

Dr Charlotte Wrigley Postdoctoral research fellow in environmental history The Greenhouse, University of Stavanger, Norway Email: Twitter: @Wrigley_CA

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