Date of Publishing:
September 24, 2023

Epistemic Dizziness

27 Sept – 29 Sept 2023

Spinning-On STS Workshop

Central Laboratory, ExC « Matters of Activity »

Sophienstr. 22a, Berlin 10178 Berlin

In an era fraught with dizzying socio-political events and burgeoning ecological catastrophes, this workshop for a special issue will delve into the concept of epistemic dizziness as a disordered state of whirling vertigo, applying it to the contemporary state of STS. As we navigate the tumultuous landscape of an open-ended pandemic, war, and socio-ecological devastation (Stengers 2021), the research practices of STS itself risk inducing epistemic dizziness. This workshop, inspired by Donna Haraway (2016), draws on serious fun as a means of staving off paralysis and fainting, urging that knowledge production can serve as both a coping mechanism and a source of resilience. Repurposing the concept of ilinx, as delineated by Roger Caillois (1961), the series of lecture performances will critically examine playful dizzying practices in Western, indigenous, and other worlds as a pathway towards comprehending our vertiginously speedy world.

Wednesday, 27 September 2023


Dizzy Rhythms Laboratory: From Body Rhythms to Communities of Rhythm, Perspectival Exchange Through Polyrhythmic Alternation

César Giraldo Herrera, Ilia State University, Georgia

Through this laboratory, we will examine some of the different physiological and anthropological understandings of nausea. We will focus on the ecological theory of perception approach which understands nausea or dizziness as a form of disruptive interference of bodily rhythms. We will explore some of the different rhythms constituting fundamental means for the coordination of body movements in different persons or organisms in a community/environment. We will explore the experiences as such bodily rhythms interact with similar rhythms in novel environmental circumstances, collapsing with them. Such challenging processes of polyrhythmic alternation, we will argue, afford deeper forms of communication, allowing us to transform our bodies, exchange our position in a given community/environment or to constitute part of other communities/environments of rhythm.

Thursday, 28 September 2023

10.00–10:30 am, INTRODUCTION

Jonna Josties, Britta Acksel and Maxime Le Calvé

10:30 am–12.00 pm, LECTURE PERFORMANCE

The Compossible Space of Dizziness: Wonder and Curiosity on Unstable Grounds

Ruth Anderwald and Leonhard Grond, University of Applied Arts Vienna

Dizziness is more than feeling dizzy. Conceptualised as an unpredictable motion, or the illusion of such motion, dizziness happens in bodies. Thus, not solely a theoretical concept, the physicality of the phenomenon is germane. This long-term artistic research highlights dizziness as a phenomenon of sense in terms of physiological or sensory input but also in terms of emotion, orientation, and epistemic sense-making processes. Based on the concept of the compossible space and augmenting this concept by involving the fields of somaesthetics and somatic learning, as well as artistic work by contemporary artists, this lecture-performance traces the fertile and creative potential of dizziness.

Friday, 29 September 2023

9.00 am–12.00 pm, MOVEMENT WORKSHOP

Sharing Misunderstandings, practices of talking-thinking-doing all the way down

Joseph Dumit, UC Davis (online from California)

If how we talk and how we sit and how we move affects how we think, then we should experiment with talking, sitting and moving as means of jostling our concepts and relations. How might we play with understanding the opacity of others to ourselves, and ourselves to others and ourselves? This exploration of a round-robin score for togetherness – moving with another while not talking, and talking with another other after having moved, shift and repeat – opens up opacity as a site for continued humble inquiry into the uses of understanding. Each ›sharing‹ – whether on youtube, zoom, or in person – can change the one who understands, can change understanding.