Invited presentation Namkje Koudenburg

Namkje Koudenburg (University of Groningen)

The Emergence and Regulation of Solidarity in Conversations and Artistic Performances

I will present two lines of research demonstrating that solidarity can emerge from coordinated interaction. The first part of the talk focuses on conversations, and shows that seemingly trivial aspects of a conversation (such as a smooth conversational flow or the occurrence of brief silences) play a pivotal role in the emergence and the regulation of solidarity. In the second part, I describe two large field experiments revealing that through the observation of coordinated movement in dance performances, solidarity can spread to a passive audience.

In this talk, I propose that the form of social interaction is a representation of the solidarity between individuals. It informs people about the status, but also about the nature of relationships. In addition, because of its dynamic nature, the form of social interaction provides a continuous gauge of whether relationships, and their associated social norms, hierarchies, and shared realities, are being established, threatened, changed, or confirmed.