Lexicon

Animism | Anselm Franke

The normative modern understanding of the concept holds animism to be a pre-modern social and psychological mechanism by means of which nature and things were erroneously endowed with souls and agency. This project (curated travelling exhibition) seeks to move beyond those mistaken but sedimented commonplaces that have narrowed the understanding of animism to a matter of belief and psychology and instead raise questions about the collective practices of humans and non-humans and the qualitative relations that they produce. The term is employed like a mirror in an investigation of modern cosmography, reversing its underlying assumptions, and particularly, the way in which modernity conceived of the boundary between life and non-life.