Zayakina R.A. The development of topological ideas within the actor-network theory


Raisa Aleksandrovna  Zayakina

Candidate of Philosophical Sciences, Associate Professor, Department of Constitutional and International Law,

Novosibirsk State Technical University

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Prosp. K. Marksa, 20, 630073 Novosibirsk, Russian Federation

Abstract. The article presents theoretical foundations of the origin and development of topological concepts by John Law and his followers. The idea of spatial multiplicity including the notion of crossing spaces of different regions, networks and flows is shown through ontological conceptualization of social objects exhibiting a complex structure as well as the unique methodology being developed by the protagonists of the “actor-network” theory. It is proved that the topological views of actor-network theory supporters implicitly involve the prerequisites for bringing together two branches of social topology which we have selected: the topology of space and the topology of form. Both branches are being developed in social and human sciences as rather isolated ones which fix different sides of social object existence, their development being done with different intensity. The first branch according to Kurt Levin and Pierre Bourdieu is aimed at relationships, relations and symbolic positions of the object in space. The second one based on the works of Rene Thom lays emphasis on the forms of objects, isomorphic processes, figurative sense and equivalency of the models of objects. The upcoming synthesis of theoretical positions on which the two branches of the actor-network theory rest can be defined as an effective      means of understanding the ontology of objects exhibiting networking characteristics and the most productive way of their topological constructing.

Key words: topological conception by John Law, variability, homeomorphism, spatiality form, objects in space and “spatial” objects, analytical tools of the actor network theory.

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The development of topological ideas within the actor-network theory by Zayakina R.A. is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.

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