Scroll to top

Design meets Science

Prof. Dr. Lars Grabbe


Prof. Dr. Lars Grabbe | Professor für Medientheorie an der Münster School of Design der FH Münster

Er ist Gründungsmitglied des Bildwissenschaftlichen Kolloquiums an der CAU zu Kiel, Mitglied des Networks Media Anthropology, der Plattform für immersive Medien und der International Society for Intermedial Studies sowie der European Society for Aesthetics. Seine Forschungsschwerpunkte sind Phänosemiose, Wahrnehmungstheorie, Kommunikationstheorie, Medientheorie und -philosophie, Bildwissenschaft, Ästhetik, Semiotik und die Filmwissenschaft.

Hapto-Gestural Reading. The Embodied Reading Experience in the Context of Digital Media

The development of media is always grounded in the range of technology and culture. This interdependent relation shows that a specific technology has always great impact on the use and reception of media and vice versa, that the specific needs and desire for a coherent reception implies a perpetual and innovative media development. It is not surprising that some of the most decisive cultural inventions of human culture – scripture and reading – are also grounded in this interdependency. A specific development of cognitive dynamic lead to scripture as a medium of interpersonal communication that necessarily refers to a history of scripture development and technological improvement. Within this technological dynamic the process of reading got influenced by the particular standards of scripture and had deep influences on the cognitive reading culture. The media theoretical assumption is at this point that a very specific, self-contained and unaffected form of reading – a kind of meta-reading – has never existed in a pure form. Reading as a cognitive process has always been influenced by the specific technological baseline of the particular socio-cultural era. In this view, the dominant historical condition of reading could be described as paper reading with the specific haptic condition of print. Paper reading has a linear form, is narrative-driven and has a primary linguistic impact on cognition. Early reading research has proclaimed with regard to paper reading that it has the possibility for creating a deep reading, a highly immersive condition of a maximum of linguistic comprehension. The baseline of this early research was a problematic technological standard of screens at that time and very often low-grade standards of technological vividness and interactivity, which lead to the judgement of a shallow reading standard of digital devices. Nowadays, the technological standards are enhanced and the process of reading that is based on electronic readers, tablets, smartphones and computer monitors could be better analyzed and related to the print and digital condition. This talk will give a cartography of digital reading with regard to the embodied nature of screen reading. In this perspective the dynamic of hapto-gestural activity is focused to highlight very different physical, ergonomic, sensory and cognitive aspects of screen reading that are important to understand the user’s reception and possible new aspects of technological design. It is the embodied nature of hapto-gestural reading that shifts the perspective of reading from a linguistic concentration to a bodily and spatial process of reading as a form of hypertextual and virtual navigation. The paper-based linear activity turns into a non-linear hybrid activity that changes the historical and cultural conditions of the literacy skills.

Die Konferenz FURE „The Future of Reading“ konzentriert sich auf die Chancen und Herausforderungen des Umbruchs in der Medienwelt.