A stone that feels right in the hand: Tactile memory, the abduction of agency and presence of the past

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

This article is a theoretical and ethnographic exploration of the possibility of “touching the past.” Drawing on fieldwork from Newfoundland, Canada, and in conversation with Gell’s Art and Agency, it focusses on the process of abduction whereby in their discovery and handling pieces of stone become artefacts which index the presence of an absent other. It is argued that through this tactile process of becoming an artefactual index, the distinction between past and present is momentarily dissolved, enfolded into to the fit between stone and hand, giving rise to the possibility of historical sensation and the feeling of pastness.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)110-130
Number of pages21
JournalJournal of Material Culture
Volume22
Issue number1
Early online date21 Nov 2016
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 Mar 2017

Keywords

  • touch
  • memory
  • Newfoundland
  • materiality
  • historical sensation

Fingerprint Dive into the research topics of 'A stone that feels right in the hand: Tactile memory, the abduction of agency and presence of the past'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this