Interaction and experiential demarcation between self and others

Main funder

Funds granted by main funder (€)

  • 525 000,00

Project timetable

Project start date01/01/2018

Project end date31/12/2021


This research project focuses on the experiential boundary formation between self and others. Our key argument is that human interaction is essentially a matter of balancing between various aspects of demarcation. By distinguishing and analysing the different forms, levels, and registers of experiential demarcation, and by examining their interrelations, the project will make a significant contribution to debates on the embodied and affective foundations of everyday human relations.

The project will examine experiential demarcation with the help of three hypotheses. First, we hypothesize that experiential demarcation is a complex and dynamic phenomenon that simultaneously proceeds on multiple levels of experience. Besides cognition, it is influenced, regulated, and oriented by affectivity (incl. bodily sensations, emotions, and moods). Secondly, we hypothesize that affective demarcation is an independent and primary phenomenon, whereas cognitively based knowledge of one’s boundaries is constitutively secondary. To underline this foundational hierarchy, we shall show how the affective level of interaction continues to support and regulate interaction even when verbal communication and cognitive processing are disrupted. Third, we hypothesize that affective demarcation is a dynamic and processual phenomenon that provides the individual with flexible, situational, and vulnerable boundaries. By investigating the relationship between affective and cognitive demarcation in experiences of empathy and joint action, we will build a conceptual framework that also accounts for potential internal tensions between the two registers.

The project will investigate experiential demarcation from philosophical-conceptual, phenomenological, empirical, and artistic points of view. By showing how interaction is structured by multilayered and dynamic demarcation, the multidisciplinary EDM project will contribute a novel account of the foundations of human sociality and communality.

Project members:
Joona Taipale (PI)
Jussi Saarinen
Sanna Tirkkonen
Petra Nyman-Salonen
Heidi Fast

Principal Investigator

Other persons related to this project (JYU)

Primary responsible unit

Fields of science

Follow-up groups

Profiling areaSchool of Wellbeing (University of Jyväskylä JYU) JYU.Well

Related publications and other outputs

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Last updated on 2023-24-08 at 20:51