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Fostering care and peaceful multispecies coexistence with agential provotypes

Fostering care and peaceful multispecies coexistence with agential provotypes

Raune Frankjaer / Denmark
Aarhus University
Paper

Human societies are deeply entangled with biotic and abiotic entities that constitute and sustain our life-world, consequently to address peaceful coexistence within and between human societies, necessitates addressing a much broader issue: peaceful multispecies coexistence and the end of environmental violence. Key to this is a change of the present dominant neoliberalist ontology, which is wreaking havoc on the planet, socially and ecologically. This paper introduces agential provotyping as a catalyst to prompt a dialectic process of re ection of the assumptions and beliefs, which constitute the foundation of our present exploitative and human-centered value system. Agential provotypes are tools of subversive design practice, which are readily accessible design artifacts aimed at a broad heterogeneous public that reveal the taken-for-granted elements of the human life-world through playful interaction and aesthetic experience. The paper starts by explicating the relationship with provotyping as emerging from systems design and posi- tions agential provotypes in relation to critical design. It thereafter demonstrates agential prototyping on the basis of an interactive installation consisting of digital artifacts and plants; nally it dis- cusses the impact of the agential provotype on interactants’ beliefs and assumptions and their development of empathy towards other lifeforms in their environment.