Fostering a More-than-human World View


Hansen describes his process of encountering more-than-human becomings through Star Trek, and through the study of Eastern religions and their conceptualizations of the world. He offers examples from his fieldwork and lived experience in one of Hokkaido's dairy farming regions to emphasize the ever unsettled process of becoming in a place. Even in an ultra-rationalized dairy farm, profit and health need not be incommensurable. Neither does shrewd no-nonsense business tact have to preclude the building of stones and the conducting of expensive ceremonies to appease the souls of the dead cows. Hansen argues that while from a modern perspective these might seem like contradictions to be redressed, they are a product of the ever unfolding complications of actual, messy living and adapting with specific places. Re-appropriating the language of "world view" and "cosmopolitanism", Hansen invites us to understand others that are not easy to rationalize, understand or even empathize with.


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Contributed date

July 16, 2019 - 4:59am

Critical Commentary

This blog post in the Series section of the Natureculture website was published on September 17th, 2018.

(How does the use of "cosmopolitanism" differ from Beck and others, who are otherwise at odds with the post-colonial and ontological orientation of worlding scholars and vitalists?

How does the "world" of this Hokkaido dairy farm relate to other worlds of eating, killing and caring in the Series? (e.g. Linton's description of adaptation and De Antoni's ecology of sprits)

In sequence with the above, how does this discussion of mechanically mediated cows differ from that in Thorsen's contribution on wildlife, White's discussion of robots, Simon's birds and fish and Smart's cows?)



Cite as

Paul Hansen, "Fostering a More-than-human World View", contributed by Emile St-Pierre, STS Infrastructures, Platform for Experimental Collaborative Ethnography, last modified 16 July 2019, accessed 28 September 2023.