Universität KonstanzExzellenzcluster „Kulturelle Grundlagen von Integration“

Neuerscheinung: The Synthetic Situation: Interactionism for a Global World. Von Karin Knorr Cetina

23. Juni 2009

In: Symbolic Interaction, 32,1 (2009), S. 61–87.

Presented as the Distinguished Lecture at the annual meeting of the Society for the Study of Symbolic Interaction in Boston, Massachusetts, on August 1, 2008, this article rethinks central assumptions of the interaction order as conceptualized by Goffman and others with respect to global domains of activity.

It proposes two new concepts, that of the synthetic situation and that of time transactions. Synthetic situations are situations that include electronically transmitted on-screen projections that add informational depth and new response requirements to the "ecological huddle" (Goffman 1964:135) of the natural situation. Global situations invariably include such components; we also find that temporal forms of integration may substitute for joint territoriality of copresence in the natural situation.

Based on research on global currency trading and other empirical examples, I identify four types of synthetic situations and describe the synthetic situation's informational character, its ontological fluidity, and the phenomenon that synthetic situations may become role-others for participants. I outline the response system of synthetic situations, sketching out the concepts of response presence and its implications in this context as well as the importance of embodiment. I also discuss time transactions and the idea of fatefulness as a symbolic charge linked to the synthetic components of the situation. (Abstract)

Prof. Dr. Karin Knorr Cetina ist maßgeblich beteiligte Wissenschaftlerin des Exzellenzclusters. Sie forscht zu „Postsoziale Mechanismen der Integration“ (mit Stefan Laube).