Rethinking, "rethinking: Post-human boundaries": Pre-given or performed?

Jo Orsatti, Ella Hafermalz, Dirk S. Hovorka

Research output: Contribution to JournalArticleAcademicpeer-review


Our rejoinder engages with two issues central to Ramiller's orientation to sociomaterial and posthumanism research. The first is the acceptance of pre-given boundaries between self and technology. The second is that appropriation of technology is a human accomplishment. In addressing these issues Ramiller presents us with a conundrum, where assumptions and language tug us in two different research directions. For example, by focusing from the outset on appropriation and resistance in terms of users and external systems, Ramiller invites the reader to backslide into the divided world he seeks to move beyond. We argue that framing research with a language of separation undermines the potential insight of a sociomaterial perspective and closes off lines of inquiry. As an alternative we suggest a relational sociomaterial grounding, where the question becomes, how is boundary work carried out and what do these processes include and exclude? We consider how categories (e.g. "new technology", "novice") are performed in practice. We thus show that from a relational view, boundaries take on a different meaning and require us to attune ourselves to the ways in which relationships and categories are (re)configured in practice in important ways. This prompts us to consider the consequences of such categories and what their (re)configurations might be.

Original languageEnglish
Article number3025104
Pages (from-to)41-44
Number of pages4
JournalData Base for Advances in Information Systems
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 1 Nov 2016
Externally publishedYes


  • Enacted boundaries
  • Performativity
  • Posthumanism
  • Relational ontology
  • Sociomateriality


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