Tracing Conceptions of the Body in HCI: From User to More-Than-Human

Sarah Homewood, Marika Hedemyr, Maja Fagerberg Ranten, Susan Kozel

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingArticle in proceedingsResearchpeer-review


This paper traces different conceptions of the body in HCI and identifies a narrative from user to body, body to bodies, and bodies to more-than-human bodies. Firstly, this paper aims to present a broader, updated, survey of work around the body in HCI. The overview shows how bodies are conceptualized as performative, sensing, datafied, intersectional and more-than-human. This paper then diverges from similar surveys of research addressing the body in HCI in that it is more disruptive and offers a critique of these approaches and pointers for where HCI might go next. We end our paper with recommendations drawn from across the different approaches to the body in HCI. In particular, that researchers working with the body have much to gain from the 4th wave HCI approach when designing with and for the body, where our relationships with technologies are understood as entangled and the body is always more-than-human.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationCHI 2021 - Proceedings of the 2021 CHI Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems : Making Waves, Combining Strengths
Number of pages12
Place of PublicationNew York
PublisherAssociation for Computing Machinery
Publication date6 May 2021
Article number258
ISBN (Electronic)978-1-4503-8096-6
Publication statusPublished - 6 May 2021
EventACM CHI Virtual Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems: Making Waves, Combining Strengths - Online, Yokohama, Japan
Duration: 8 May 202113 May 2021


ConferenceACM CHI Virtual Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems
Internet address


  • Body
  • Embodied interaction design
  • Embodiment
  • Entanglement theories
  • Feminism
  • Fourth wave hci
  • Intersectionality
  • More-than-human
  • Phenomenology
  • Posthuman
  • Sensing
  • performance

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