Cultural Artifacts Transform Embodied Practice: How a Sommelier Card Shapes the Behavior of Dyads Engaged in Wine Tasting

The article “Cultural Artifacts Transform Embodied Practice: How a Sommelier Card Shapes the Behavior of Dyads Engaged in Wine Tasting” by Joanna Rączaszek-Leonardi, Julia Krzesicka, Natalia Klamann, Karolina Ziembowicz, Michał Denkiewicz, Małgorzata Kukiełka and Julian Zubek was published in the Frontiers in Psychology.

Abstract
The radical embodied approach to cognition directs researchers’ attention to skilled practice in a structured environment. This means that the structures present in the environment, including structured interactions with others and with artifacts, are put at least on a par with individual cognitive processes in explaining behavior. Both ritualized interactive formats and artifacts can be seen as forms of “external memory,” usually shaped for a particular domain, that constrain skilled practice, perception, and cognition in online behavior and in learning and development. In this paper, we explore how a task involving the recognition of difficult sensory stimuli (wine) by collective systems (dyads) is modified by a domain-specific linguistic artifact (a sommelier card). We point to how using the card changes the way participants explore the stimuli individually, making it more consistent with culturally accrued sommelier know-how, as well as how it transforms the interaction between the participants, creating specific divisions of labor and novel relations. In our exploratory approach, we aim to integrate qualitative methods from anthropology and sociology with quantitative methods from psychology and the dynamical systems approach using both coded behavioral data and automatic movement analysis.

“We join ourselves to the living world by the artifacts of art and science – by made things”
Wendell Berry, Life is a Miracle, p. 83

Rączaszek-Leonardi, J., Krzesicka, J., Klamann, N., Ziembowicz, K., Denkiewicz, M, Kukiełka, M., Zubek, J. (2019). Cultural Artifacts Transform Embodied Practice: How a Sommelier Card Shapes the Behavior of Dyads Engaged in Wine Tasting. Frontiers in Psychology. [LINK]