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IntercorporealityEmerging Socialities in Interaction$
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Christian Meyer, J Streeck, and J. Scott Jordan

Print publication date: 2017

Print ISBN-13: 9780190210465

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: August 2017

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780190210465.001.0001

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The Cultural Organization of Intercorporeality

The Cultural Organization of Intercorporeality

Interaction, Emotion, and the Senses among the Wolof of Northwestern Senegal

(p.143) 6 The Cultural Organization of Intercorporeality

Christian Meyer

Oxford University Press

This chapter addresses the question of the universality of specific forms of intercorporeality. This detailed microethnographic study of a Wolof village in Northwestern Senegal describes how different senses—eye-gaze, hearing, and touch—are used in embodied interaction and how, in turn, participation in cultural interaction patterns shapes people’s senses. These patterns are notably different than they are in those Western societies about whose micro-interactions which we have reliable information. The chapter first analyzes the cooperative pounding of millet by four women, then, in the second part, examines in detail social interactions in which other intercorporeal resources than gaze, notably acoustic feedback signals and touch, are used to secure intersubjectivity. The third part shows how the experience and expression of emotions as well as basic cultural concepts such as the “person” are shaped by the specific Wolof forms of intercorporeality as they are lived in concrete interactional situations.

Keywords:   intercorporeality, microethnography, Wolof, Senegal, eye-gazing, embodied interaction, acoustic feedback signals

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