Annemarie Mol's picture

Prof. Annemarie Mol

University of Amsterdam

Annemarie Mol is professor of Anthropology of the Body. In her work she combines the ethnographic study of practices with the task of shifting our theoretical repertoires. Her most important research lines to date:

The words - language as practice
Saying 'lekker' (in Dutch) is not quite the same as saying 'tasty' or 'delicious' (in English) and both these terms differ from 'nice'. A lot may be learned from attending in detail to words, their contexts and their effects.

The object - multiplicity
Objects of knowledge may be understood as focal points of different perspectives. But it is also possible to trace how they are being handled (sliced, questioned, coloured, cooked up) in varied knowledge practices. If we do the latter, then it appears that objects-in-practice (say 'anaemia', 'atherosclerosis', or 'body') tend to come in many versions. These versions are both different and interdependent: multiple.

The process - care
Decision trees suggest linear ways of working where one thing follows from and after the other. However, in many practices, care practices included, time is not an arrow and entities are not brought into being just once, but keep on changing. Rather than fitting fantasies of control, such processes depend on endless tinkering. Such tinkering, if done well, is care.

The site - topologies
Everything happens somewhere. And then things travel between places. But in which kind of space to situate events, techniques and objects? There are various topological figures to consider, such as regions, networks, fluids and fires. They each order and allow for travel, boundaries, similarity and difference - differently.

The engagement - eating as relating
What happens if we take 'eating' as a model of what it is to know, to act and/or to relate? This is the research project that Mol currently works on with the Eating Bodies in Practice and Theory team. As a part of this project we take a fresh look at what it is to eat. What, in practice, are tasting, digesting, wasting, thriving, appreciating? What kind of relations between organisms does 'eating' craft and encourage? What is 'an eating body' and where does it begin and end? How does 'eating' enduringly change the world?