Arquivo da tag: STS

Entertaining Science: A report from a colloquy at the intersection of science and entertainment (CASTAC)

June 9th, 2015, by 


As you read this post, members of a community of like-minded scholars are unwinding after a weekend symposium at the UK’s University of Manchester. The symposium Stories About Science—Exploring Science Communication and Entertainment Media explored the intersections of science with entertainment from various disciplinary perspectives and as experienced by a diverse range of publics. Organized through the University of Manchester’s Centre for the History of Science, Technology and Medicine (CHSTM), the SAS symposium was the brainchild of the Playing God Project of CHSTM ‘s Science and Entertainment Laboratory research group.

So what, you may ask, does any of this have to do with CASTAC? Well, as an anthropologist invested in exploring ethnographically the cultural qualities of humanity’s intersections with science, I was interested in efforts by the symposium’s presenters, not unlike CASTAC’s own, to understand significant cultural aspects of science in contemporary society. Perhaps more intriguingly, I saw it as a potential opportunity to further our goal of fostering discussions between anthropologists and other STS scholars. To that end, I contacted several SAS symposiasts to get a sense of what they presented at SAS. Colloquy topics ran from explorations of gender for fictional television scientists to the ways legitimate scientists are presented in the media to the power of comics in science communication.

The Presentations

Among the research presented was a paper by Rashel Li of the Australian National University, who reported on her focus group studies of the ways in which gender balance (or imbalance) has been portrayed in science-themed film and television. Viewing representations of gender through the lens of the American sitcom, The Big Bang TheoryLi’s work focuses on that show’s discipline-based gender distribution of men in physics and women in biology and its attempts to portray the characters as equally capable in their respective science fields. Li looks specifically at the ways female scientists are portrayed in the show by collecting feedback on the show’s  representations of gender from adult focus groups. The principal responses of these focus groups ranged from being annoyed by how The Big Bang Theory followed gender-based stereotypes of men in physics and women in biology, to being unaware of the imbalanced gender distribution, to thinking that the show reflected reality and helped humanize science. Perhaps not surprisingly, none of the focus group participants endorsed an imbalanced characterization of scientific capability.

Christopher Herzog (University of Salzburg, Austria) explored in his paper the phenomenon of contemporary neuroscience plays, which highlight the theatre’s unique potential of renegotiating the mind-body problem by having to represent the mental phenomenologically via bodies on stage. Often combined with neuroscientific visualizations of the brain via screen projections, these are theatrical performances in which “deviant minds,” brain pathologies (e.g., anterograde amnesia), and mental illness (e.g., depression) are presented to the public. Arguing against presumed educational or informative functions of science plays and for an epistemically more nuanced understanding of the genre, Herzog contends the plays do not impart scientific ‘facts.’ Ultimately, according to Herzog, “Neuroscience plays are a form of meta-visualization, illustrating how theatre can critically alert us to tendencies in our contemporary culture, and specifically how the forms of presentation (e.g., the dissemination of brain images in mass media) and received-neuroscientific-facts often result in anthropological and social categories of normalcy through recourse to the authority of science.”

Declan Fahy (American University) presented the argument that astrophysicist and public figure Neil deGrasse Tyson illuminates and embodies the enhanced power of scientific celebrity. Using a cultural-historical analysis of Tyson’s decades-long public career to demonstrate how he became a scientific star, Fahy argued that Tyson’s fame rests on how he came to symbolize three wider historical movements in post-1960s U.S culture: the rise of the African-American public intellectual, the endeavors to enhance scientific literacy, and the drive to reignite space exploration. Fahy described how Tyson’s star status has earned him social power to spread scientific ideas through wider culture, granted him influence over science policy, the US space program, and astronomical research, and created, as a consequence of his celebrity, a potent form of scientific authority in popular culture. The argument is one Fahy examines in depth in his book, The New Celebrity Scientists: Out of the Lab and Into the Limelight (2015).

In a similar vein, Benjamin Gross, of the Chemical Heritage Foundation (CHF) in Philadelphia, used Neil deGrasse Tyson’s Cosmos: A Spacetime Odyssey as a starting point for his presentation on how a group of scholars and communications personnel at the CHF successfully organized #CosmosChat, a weekly Twitter conversation in 2014 examining Cosmos’s presentation of science and history. Mobilizing CHF’s library and artifact collections, as well as the expertise of in-house research fellows, the tweets critiqued Cosmos and supplemented each episode’s weekly content. Gross discussed the substantive themes that emerged during the course of these critiques and evaluated the potential applicability of the #CosmosChat model to other communication opportunities that lie at the intersection of science and entertainment.


Drawing on two projects aimed at communicating science to young people, Science Comics and Cosmic Comics, Emma Weitkamp of the University of West England presented a paper on comics as science communication. Traditionally seen as purely entertainment media, comics have more recently been employed in science communication. Exploring comics as methods for situating science within our day-to-day activities, Weitkamp poses the question: Can a combination of science, humor, and narrative help to show how science is part of our everyday lives? Weitkamp posits that comic media have strong potential, both as learning aids and as creative ways to place science within society, as their fictional nature allows greater juxtaposition of the real and the imaginary, allowing authors, for example, to pose ‘what if’ questions to their readers, such as what if the world didn’t physically work the way it does?

The success of SAS was another success for STS. As David Kirby, the principal investigator in CHSTM ‘s Playing God Project, notes “science and entertainment represent two of the most powerful cultural institutions that humans have developed to understand and explain their world.” If this is true, the scholars aligned with SAS seem poised to offer some intriguing and potentially synergistic research that could align well with the work of CASTAC scholars.


Stefan Helmreich on Waves: an anthropology of scientific things (The Anthropo.scene)

JANUARY 19, 2015 BY 

A newer video on Stefan’s latest project, which looks fascinating. For those interested in reading, HAU has put the transcript of the video is here.

Worlding Anthropologies of Technosciences? (

October 28th, 2014, by

The past 4S meeting in Buenos Aires made visible the expansion of STS to various regions of the globe. Those of us who happened to be at the 4S meeting at University of Tokyo four years ago will remember the excitement of having the opportunity to work side-by-side with STS scholars from East and Southeast Asia. The same opportunity for worlding STS was opened again this past summer in Buenos Aires.

In order to help increase diversity of perspectives, Sharon Traweek and I organized a 4S panel on the relationships between STS and anthropology with a focus on the past, present, and future of the exchange among national traditions. The idea came out of our conversations about the intersections between science studies and the US anthropology of the late 1980’s with the work of CASTAC pioneers such as Diana Forsythe, Gary Downey, Joseph Dumit, David Hakken, David Hess, and Sharon Traweek, among several others who helped to establish the technosciences as legitimate domains of anthropological inquiry. It was not an easy battle, as Chris Furlow’s post on the history of CASTAC reminded us, but the results are undeniably all around us today. Panels on anthropology of science and technology can always be found at professional meetings. Publications on science and technology have space in various journals and the attention of university publishers these days.

For our panel this year we had the opening remarks of Gary Downey who, after reading our proposal aloud, emphasized the importance of advancing a cultural critique of science and technology through a situated, grounded stance. Quoting Marcus and Fischer’s “Anthropology as Cultural Critique” (1986) he emphasized that anthropology of science and technology could not dispense with the reflection upon the place, the situation, and the positioning of the anthropologist. Downey described his own positioning as an anthropologist and critical participant in engineering. Two decades ago Downey challenged the project of “anthropology as cultural critique” to speak widely to audiences outside anthropology and to practice anthropology as cultural critique, as suggested by the title of his early AAA paper, “Outside the Hotel”.

Yet “Anthropology as Cultural Critique” represented, he pointed out, one of the earliest reflexive calls in US anthropology for us to rethink canonical fieldwork orientations and our approach to the craft of ethnography with its representational politics. Downey and many others who invented new spaces to advance critical agendas in the context of science and technology did so by adding to the identity of the anthropologist other identities and responsibilities, such as that of former mechanical engineer, laboratory physicist, theologian, and experimenter of alternative forms of sociality, etc. These overlapping and intersecting identities opened up a whole field of possibilities for renewed modes of inquiry which, after “Anthropology as Cultural Critique”, consisted, as Downey suggested, in the juxtaposition of knowledge, forms of expertise, positionalities, and commitments. This is where we operate as STS scholars: at intersecting research areas, bridging “fault lines” (as Traweek’s felicitous expression puts it), and doing anthropology with and not without anthropologists.

The order of presentations for our panel was defined in a way to elicit contrasts and parallels between different modes of inquiry, grounded in different national anthropological traditions. The first session had Marko Monteiro (UNICAMP), Renzo Taddei (UNIFESP), Luis Felipe R. Murillo (UCLA), and Aalok Khandekar (Maastricht University) as presenters and Michael M. J. Fischer (MIT) as commentator. Marko Monteiro, an anthropologist working for an interdisciplinary program in science and technology policy in Brazil addressed questions of scientific modeling and State policy regarding the issue of deforestation in the Amazon. His paper presented the challenges of conducting multi-sited ethnography alongside multinational science collaborations, and described how scientific modeling for the Amazalert project was designed to accommodate natural and sociocultural differences with the goal of informing public policy. In the context of his ethnographic work, Monteiro soon found himself in a double position as a panelist expert and as an anthropologist interested in how different groups of scientists and policy makers negotiate the incorporation of “social life” through a “politics of associations.”

Similarly to Monteiro’s positioning, Khandekar benefited in his ethnographic work for being an active participant and serving as the organizer of expert panels involving STS scholars and scientists to design nanotechnology-based development programs in India. Drawing from Fischer’s notion of “third space”, Khandekar addressed how India could be framed productively as such for being a fertile ground for conceptual work where cross-disciplinary efforts have articulated humanities and technosciences under the rubric of innovation. Serving as a knowledge broker for an international collaboration involving India, Kenya, South Africa, and the Netherlands on nanotechnology, Khandekar had first-hand experience in promoting “third spaces” as postcolonial places for cross-disciplinary exchange through story telling.

Shifting the conversation to the context of computing and political action, Luis Felipe R. Murillo’s paper described a controversy surrounding the proposal of a “feminist programming language” and discussed the ways in which it provides access to the contemporary technopolitical dynamics of computing. The feminist programming language parody served as an entry point to analyze how language ideologies render symbolic boundaries visible, highlighting fundamental aspects of socialization in the context of computing in order to reproduce concepts and notions of the possible, logical, and desirable technical solutions. In respect to socioeconomic and political divisions, he suggested that feminist approaches in their intersectionality became highly controversial for addressing publicly systemic inequalities that are transversal to the context of computing and characterize a South that is imbricated in the North of “big computing” (an apparatus that encompasses computer science, information technology industries, infrastructures, and cultures with their reinvented peripheries within the global North and South).

Renzo Taddei recasted the debate regarding belief in magic drawing from a long lasting thread of anthropological research on logical reasoning and cultural specificity. Taddei opened up his take on our conversation with the assertion that to conduct ethnography on witchcraft assuming that it does not exist is fundamentally ethnocentric. This observation was meant to take us the core of his concerns regarding climate sciences vis-à-vis traditional Brazilian forms of forecasting from Sertão, a semi-arid and extremely impoverished area of the Northeast of Brazil. He then proceeded to discuss magical manipulation of the atmosphere from native and Afro-Brazilian perspectives in Brazil.

For the second day of our panel, we had papers by Kim Fortun (RPI), Mike Fortun (RPI), Sharon Traweek (UCLA) and the commentary of Claudia Fonseca (UFRGS) whose long-term contributions to study of adoption, popular culture, science and human rights in Brazil has been highly influential. In her paper, Kim Fortun addressed the double bind of expertise, the in-between of competence and hubris, structural risk and unpredictability of the very infrastructures experts are called upon to take responsibility. Fortun’s call was for a mode of interaction and engagement among science and humanities scholars oriented toward friendship and hospitality as well as commitment for our technoscientific futures under the aegis of late industrialism. “Ethnographic insight”, according to Fortun, “can loop back into the world” through the means of creative pedagogies which are attentive to the fact that science practitioners and STS scholars mobilize different analytic lenses while speaking through and negotiating with distinct discursive registers in the context of international collaborations. Our assumptions of what is conceptually shared should not anticipate what is to be seen or forged in the context of our international exchange, since what is foregrounded in discourse always implicates one form or another of erasure. The image Fortun suggested for us to think with is not that of a network, but that of a kaleidoscope in which the complexity of disasters can be seen across multiple dimensions and scales in their imbrication at every turn.

In his presentation, Michael Fortun questioned the so-called “ontological turn” to recast the “hauntological” dimensions of our research practices vis-à-vis those of our colleagues in the biosciences, that is, to account for the imponderables of scientific and anthropological languages and practices through the lens of a poststructural understanding of the historical functioning of language. In his study of asthma, Fortun attends to multiple perspectives and experiences with asthma across national, socioeconomic, scientific and technical scales. In the context of his project “The Asthma Files”, he suggests, alongside Kim Fortun, hospitality and friendship as frames for engaging instead of disciplining the contingency of ethnographic encounters and ethnographic projects. For future collaborations, two directions are suggested: 1) investigating and experimenting with modes of care and 2) designing collaborative digital platforms for experimental ethnography. The former is related to the scientists care for their instruments, methods, theories, intellectual reproduction, infrastructures, and problems in their particular research fields, while the latter poses the question of care among ourselves and the construction of digital platforms to facilitate and foster collaboration in anthropology.

This panel was closed with Sharon Traweek’s paper on multi-scalar complexity of contemporary scientific collaborations, based on her current research on data practices and gender imbalance in astronomy. Drawing from concepts of meshwork and excess proposed by researchers with distinct intellectual projects such as Jennifer McWeeny, Arturo Escobar, Susan Paulson, and Tim Ingold, Traweek discussed billion-dollar science projects which involve multiple research communities clustered around a few recent research devices and facilities, such as the Atacama Large Millimeter/submillimeter Array (ALMA) in Chile and the International Thermonuclear Experimental Reactor (ITER) in France. In the space of ongoing transformations of big science toward partially-global science, women and ethnic minorities are building meshworks as overlapping networks in their attempts to build careers in astronomy. Traweek proposed a revision of the notion of “enrollment” to account for the ways in which mega projects in science are sustained for decades of planning, development, construction, and operation at excessive scales which require more than support and consensus. Mega projects in the technosciences are, in Traweek’s terms, “over-determined collages that get built and used” by international teams with “glocal” structures of governance and funding.

In his concluding remarks Michael M. J. Fischer addressed the relationship between anthropology and STS through three organizing axes: time, topic, and audiences. As a question of time, a quarter century has passed for the shared history of STS and anthropology and probing questions have been asked and explored in the technosciences in respect to its apparatuses, codes, languages, life cycle of machines, educational curricula, personal and technical trajectories, which is well represented in one of the foundational texts of our field, Traweek’s “Beamtimes and Lifetimes” (1988). Traweek has helped establish a distinctive anthropological style “working alongside scientists and engineers through juxtaposition not against them.” In respect to the relationships between anthropology and STS, Fischer raised the question of pedagogies as, at once, a prominent form of engagement in the technosciences as well as an anthropological mode of engagement with the technosciences. The common thread connecting all the panel contributions was the potential for new pedagogies to emerge with the contribution of world anthropologies of sciences and technologies. That is, in the space of socialization of scientists, engineers, and the public, space of the convention, as well as invention, and knowledge-making, all the presenters addressed the question of how to advance an anthropology of science and technology with forms of participation, as Fischer suggests, as productive critique.

Along similar lines, Claudia Fonseca offered closing remarks about her own trajectory and the persistence of national anthropological traditions informing our cross-dialogs and border crossings. Known in Brazil as an “anthropologist with an accent”, an anthropologist born in the US, trained in France, and based in Brazil for the most part of her academic life, she cannot help but emphasize the style and forms of engagement that are specific to Brazilian anthropology which has a tradition of conducting ethnography at home. The panel served, in sum, for the participants to find a common thread connecting a rather disparate set of papers and for advancing a form of dialogue across national traditions and modes of engagement which is attentive to local political histories and (national) anthropological trajectories. As suggested by Michael Fortun, we are just collectively conjuring – with much more empiria than magic – a new beginning in the experimental tradition for world anthropologies of sciences and technologies.

Latour on digital methods (Installing [social] order)


In a fascinating, apparently not-peer-reviewed non-article available free online here, Tommaso Venturini and Bruno Latour discuss the potential of “digital methods” for the contemporary social sciences.

The paper summarizes, and quite nicely, the split of sociological methods to the statistical aggregate using quantitative methods (capturing supposedly macro-phenomenon) and irreducibly basic interactions using qualitative methods (capturing supposedly micro-phenomenon). The problem is that neither of which aided the sociologist in capture emergent phenomenon, that is, capturing controversies and events as they happen rather than estimate them after they have emerged (quantitative macro structures) or capture them divorced from non-local influences (qualitative micro phenomenon).

The solution, they claim, is to adopt digital methods in the social sciences. The paper is not exactly a methodological outline of how to accomplish these methods, but there is something of a justification available for it, and it sounds something like this:

Thanks to digital traceability, researchers no longer need to choose between precision and scope in their observations: it is now possible to follow a multitude of interactions and, simultaneously, to distinguish the specific contribution that each one makes to the construction of social phenomena. Born in an era of scarcity, the social sciences are entering an age of abundance. In the face of the richness of these new data, nothing justifies keeping old distinctions. Endowed with a quantity of data comparable to the natural sciences, the social sciences can finally correct their lazy eyes and simultaneously maintain the focus and scope of their observations.

No hay extitución sino modos de extitucionalización (Networks & Matters)



A mediados del 2000, Francisco Tirado y Miquel Domènech empezaron a utilizar el concepto de extitución (ver Extituciones: del poder y sus anatomías), acuñado por Michel Serres (1995), para analizar los cambios que las innovaciones tecnológicas desencadenaban en las instituciones contemporáneas: por ejemplo, en los programas de desinstitucionalización de las personas con trastornos mentales severos (Vitores, 2002). En mi caso, la noción de extitución sirvió para orientar mi tesis sobre la ‘virtualización’ del cuidado en los servicios de teleasistencia domiciliaria (López, 2006).

Tanto para mi como para el resto, el concepto operó como una suerte de marco teórico con el que interpretar los datos. Así, los rasgos más distintivos de la teleasistencia domiciliaria adquirieron sentido a la luz de un proceso más amplio: la emergencia de formas sociales alternativas a las clásicas instituciones de cuidado, todas ellas basadas en el internamiento (residencial, hospitalario e incluso domiciliario).

En todos los casos, tomamos la extitución como lo ‘otro’ material de la institución. Así lo expresé en mi capítulo de Lo social y lo virtual (2006),

“las instituciones están basadas en un geometría social compuesta de líneas de fractura, donde el sistema de proximidades y lejanías es sustituido por una partición espacial en dos términos: como dice Serres (1996), “de un lado, la región de las razones y todas las victorias; de otro, el país desde donde estoy seguro de no ir jamás, por mi ánimo y mi energía espiritual, más allá de cualquier tentación que pueda tener” (Serres, 1996, p. 46). Manicomios, hospitales, cuarteles, conventos, talleres, prisiones y hogares modernos responden al juego de distinciones y divisiones propias de la racionalidad cartesiana. Las instituciones fragmentan, disgregan y separan para hacer visible la distinción. Construir una institución es constituir un espacio cartesiano, claro y distinto, donde “como el otro está allá y estoy seguro de ser diferente a él, entonces pienso correctamente”. En contraposición, la extitución es una ordenación social que no necesita constituir un “dentro” y un “a fuera” sino únicamente una superficie en la que se conectan y se desconectan multitud de agentes (Tirado y Domènech, 2001). Por lo tanto, las líneas de ruptura (Lefebvre, 1974) que definen el espacio abstracto de las instituciones disciplinares se convierten, en la extitución, en líneas de conexión. En ella, tomando a Bachelard (1965), podemos decir que no encontramos una topoanalítica sino una topofilia””

Sin embargo, fue Francisco Tirado (2001) quien sintetizó de manera más clara las características propias de la extitución en contraposición a las de la institución.

“La institución se asienta en una materialidad dura, lo hemos visto, cuerpos y edificios; la extitución se asienta sobre una materialidad blanda y mezclada, encontramos cuerpos pero también móviles inmutables que cruzan los diferentes edificios conectando los distintos actores. (…) La institución se define a través del plano, está planificada. La extitución solapa planos geométricos en una trama topológica (…) La materialidad dura permite que la institución instaure relaciones espesas, repetitivas y bien definidas. Las instauradas en las extituciones son variables y flotantes. La primera, de este modo, crea rutinas que conducen a una socialidad constante y perdurable. La segunda por el contrario crea movimiento. (…) La institución despliega algún tipo de encierro, ya sea físico o simbólico. La extitución es como un gran aparato de captura, incorpora, conecta. (…) La primera se asienta en una realidad local. Está claramente definida y el problema es alcanzar lo global. La segunda presenta un retrato local y parcial de una globalidad.” (Tirado, 2001, p. 590)

La noción de extitución representaba, por tanto, un intento por señalar las diferencias operativas en los mecanismos de poder contemporáneos. Sin embargo, esto trajo consigo nuevos problemas. Al menos para el trabajo que estaba haciendo en ese momento. A medida que el concepto ganaba peso y se convertía en una forma con la que filtrar el caso empírico, las diferencias ya tipificadas entre extitución e institución resultaron ser demasiado gruesas y rígidas para dar cuenta del caso con el nivel de detalle necesario. Sencillamente había cosas de la teleasistencia domiciliaria que desbordaban las fronteras que habíamos trazado entre extitución e institución.

Esto me hizo pensar que quizás era necesario volver sobre el concepto, reflexionar sobre los problemas que tuvimos con dicha noción y quizás restaurar un uso del término que eventualmente pudiera llevarnos por nuevos caminos. Quedó ahí, en un “quizás algún día”, hasta que me tope recientemente con un par de trabajos delVivero de Iniciativas Ciudadanas (VIC). En estos trabajos VIC utiliza el término extitución para señalar por un lado el funcionamiento de iniciativas ciudadanas urbanas derivadas del 15M, claramente opuesto a las instituciones tradicionales (verExtituciones: nuevas instituciones ciudadanas); y por otro lado, para guiar el diseño de espacios de cuidado para personas mayores no institucionales (ver Senior Urban Extitution).

Si tomamos estos trabajos y los que hicimos en su momento, es posible establecer una continuidad clara. El término se utiliza fundamentalmente para identificar una realidad, para agrupar y dar sentido a las características de funcionamiento de un dispositivo. El resultado es una suerte de: «Ah, claro, esto es una extitución!» Esto puede vivirse como una suerte de descubrimiento, un hallazgo. Sin embargo, cuando esto conduce a una clausura interpretativa, como ocurrió en mi caso, el hallazgo puede convertirse con demasiada rapidez en un simple reconocimiento. La culpa, de todos modos, no creo que sea del término, más bien de una suerte de ímpetu por sustantivizar difícil de aplacar cuando la palabreja tiene tanto gancho.

Así, y a riesgo de parece aguafiestas y aburrido, creo que puede ser terapéutico desandar el camino para tratar de desustantivizar la noción y re-instalar el uso topológico y materialista que tenía para Serres.

Si volvemos a Atlas (Serres, 1995) veremos que el concepto de extitución no designa tanto un tipo de entidad como una lógica que afecta a dicha entidad, una suerte de proceso. La pregunta que nos invita a hacer Serres es: ¿cuál es el vector de extitucionalización que defina una determinada entidad? En este uso, la noción de extitución no designa una entidad opuesta a la institución sino un determinado proceso que podemos encontrar en organizaciones tanto institucionales como extitucionales. “La institución puede definirse como una lógica centrípeta de establecimiento de geometrías claras, mientras la extitución define una lógica topológica centrífuga” (Serres, 1995, p. 124). Lo importante es el modo. En el fondo, una señala el plano de lo actual y el otro el plano de lo virtual (Lévy, 1999), independientemente de la entidad que consideremos. Ambas lógicas operan tanto en plataformas de organización online como en instituciones de carne y ladrillo de toda la vida. De hecho, el entuerto con el término extitución se asemeja mucho al que encontramos cuando asimilamos la disciplina foucaultiana a la clausura de las instituciones. Foucault nos explica en Vigilar y Castigar que el encierro es recreado por las disciplinas normativas de un modo diferente porque éstas operan en los márgenes e incluso al margen de dicho encierro (de ahí por ejemplo la escolarización de la familia y la familiarización de la escuela).

Entender la extitución como una lógica o manera, en vez de como una realidad positiva, nos permite interrogar a las organizaciones sociales sin necesidad de identificarla con tipologías pre-establecidas. De hecho, si revisamos los conceptos de espacio liso y espacio estriado que proponen Deleuze y Guattari en Mil Mesetas, es posible entender la distinción entre institución y extitución como tendencias en un determinado terreno de juego, como dos conceptos que designan las potencias de organización y disolución que componen un espacio concreto y no como conceptos contradictorios que operan a partir de una relación dialéctica. Como dicen Deleuze y Guattari (1988):

“Los dos espacios sólo existen de hecho gracias a las combinaciones entre ambos: el espacio liso no cesa de ser traducido, transvasado a un espacio estriado; y el espacio estriado es constantemente restituido, devuelto a un espacio liso” (Deleuze y Guattari, 1988, p. 484).

Por lo tanto, lo importante no es tanto por afirmar que estamos ante una extitución o ante una institución.  El reto, y es un reto bien complicado, es encontrar y describir los mecanismos específicos de institucionalización (territorialización) y extitucionalización (desterritorialización) que configuran un determinado dispositivo. Un reto que se vuelve si cabe aún más relevante cuando lo que buscamos al pensar o diseñar estos dispositivos es deliberadamente desplazar el binomio moral y espacial moderno.

Daniel López

–  Deleuze, G., & Guattari, F. (1988). Mil mesetas : Capitalismo y esquizofrenia. Valencia: Pre-Textos.
–  Lévy, Pierre. (1999). ¿Qué es lo virtual? Barcelona; Buenos Aires; México: Paidós
–  López, D. (2006). La teleasistencia domiciliaria como extitución. Análisis de las nuevas formas espaciales del cuidado. In F. J. Tirado & M. Domènech (Eds.), Lo social y lo virtual : Nuevas formas de control y transformación social (pp. 60-78). Barcelona: Editorial UOC
–  Serres, M. (1995). Atlas. Madrid: Cátedra
–  Serres, M. (1996). La comunicación : Hermes I. Barcelona: Anthropos Editorial del hombre.
–  Tirado, F. J., & Domènech, M. (2001). Extituciones: Del poder y sus anatomías.Politica y Sociedad, 36, 183-196
–  Vitores, A. (2002). From hospital to community: Case management and the virtualization of institutions. Athenea Digital, 1(6)