Invention of Objects: Sports, Standardization and Modern Subjectivity

Olatz González Abrisketa Artículo en Revista 2020 Grupo Consolidado

Política y Sociedad

In this article, Olatz González Abrisketa addresses the apathetic nature modernity attributes to objects. It focuses on their standardization in sport and offers an anomalous case within it: that of the Basque pelota. Despite the regulation of their limits, in size and weight, the balls in the Basque game are unique, that is, each one of them has its own personality and this must be recognized. Three days before the game, the pelotaris meet to choose the balls and show them to the public, an event that opens up a game of perspectives that has an effect on the conceptualization of balls and pelotaris and makes it difficult to consider them objects and subjects respectively. Making use of concepts such as quasi-object (Michel Serres) or reciprocity of perspectives (Roy Wagner), the article argues that the “invention of objects” produced by modernity denies processes of recognition with things that are substantial for the understanding of the self and others. The “subjects” hold the illusion that they, and only they, settle their own differences and ignore the fact that are both object and subject for the other, be it person, animal or thing.

González Abrisketa, O. (2020): “La invención de los objetos: deporte, estandarización y subjetividad moderna”, Política y Sociedad, 57(2), pp. 395-414.