Graduation Year


Document Type




Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.)

Degree Granting Department


Major Professor

Carl Herndl, Ph.D.

Committee Member

Steven Jones, Ph.D.

Committee Member

Margarethe Kusenbach, Ph.D.

Committee Member

Lisa Meloncon, Ph.D.

Committee Member

Ali Yalcin, Ph.D.


Agency, New Materialism, Triathlon, Wearables, Actor Network Theory


Wearable technologies are being adopted in increasing numbers and the market space appears poised for continued growth in virtually all areas, from medicine, to self-quantification, to sports. While the overwhelming majority of work on wearables has been done on their medical applications and their role in shaping identity, this dissertation examines the roles that wearable technologies play on the decision-making processes in athletic contexts. Using new materialism and Actor Network Theory as lenses, I attempt to break from the Cartesian model that places human subjectivity and intentionality at the center of a rhetorical situation and, rather, allow that non-human actants are agentive. I examine the interactions that age-group triathletes have with their wearable technologies and the shifting agencies that accompany those interactions. These interactions call on disparate human and non-human actors in forming a series of temporary, shifting networks that utilize a distributed agency in the decision making process.

Included in

Rhetoric Commons