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Distributed Agency$
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N. J. Enfield and Paul Kockelman

Print publication date: 2017

Print ISBN-13: 9780190457204

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: February 2017

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780190457204.001.0001

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Place and Extended Agency

Place and Extended Agency

(p.213) Chapter 22 Place and Extended Agency
Distributed Agency

Paul C. Adams

Oxford University Press

Action and identity are inextricable from place. For example, people appropriate places for use in achieving certain goals and objectives; at the same time they are constrained by the range of place-making techniques they are able to access. In addition, social sanctions often involve the reduction of extensibility, for example through exile, imprisonment, or exclusion from certain communication media. Such changes use aspects of place to truncate an agent’s ability to act. As places change, for example through the diffusion of communication and transportation innovations, agents often experience an increase in extensibility—the range of their potential action. However, extensibility can also be trapped in place, for example if one lives in an environment with lagging communication and transportation infrastructure. In short, agency functions with and through place.

Keywords:   geography, place, dasein, home, environment, architecture, nationalism, topophilia, territoriality, agency

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