LIMITS '21 Paper
Various concepts have attempted to capture the nature of the contemporary political-economic system of globalised capitalism and its disastrous consequences for the planet, including World System Analysis or the Capitalocene. Especially Decolonial thinkers see its roots in colonialism. The resulting modernity/coloniality structures many aspects of human life everywhere, including gender identities, relationships amongst humans and with nature. Technology plays a vital part, requiring reflections on how HCI researchers can react to these challenges. In a class of an HCI master program, we have attempted to jointly begin to understand HCI’s role in the capitalocene by studying relevant concepts and empirically investigating specific local yet connected phenomena. With participants being distributed across the globe, we were able to study different shared yet locally specific phenomena inspired by multisited ethnography. In this paper, we report on the structure and experience of the class as well as our findings.