“In our everyday life most of us pay little conscious attention to how we sense. To be sure, as the opening paragraphs of this introduction have shown, we do pay a great deal of attention to what we sense, but the ways in which we sense most often recede into the background of our awareness. As Leder (1990) has observed, most of our daily experience of our body is marked by lack of reflection, and it is only when routines and habits are interrupted—for example when we suddenly feel sick, or when a sensation overwhelms us—that our own body “awakens” our consciousness of it. In light of this lack of attention, most of us have become accustomed to think of our senses as neutral media that, when they work properly, perform like conduits of external stimuli. Take this book, for example. The texture, color, shape, and size of the pages that you are holding seem to be nothing but rather elementary stimuli that your senses of sight and touch “transmit”—much like information bits—to your brain for processing. There seems to be very little social significance whatsoever in this process, doesn’t it? Perhaps this is why, after all, most people view perception as a rather cognitive affair and sensation as a purely physiological on”
"Somatic Work: Towards a sociology of the senses"
The importance of our senses is immense. I don’t really think that anyone is going to deny that. But are they a purely cognitive function and what are the norms that surround them? Smells and tastes are the easiest to see the cultural influence on our sense and how we perceive them, but what we are perceiving.
It is interesting to think about how that perception can be manipulated and changed through a well designed (no not capital D, Desisgn).