Filed under: affect, Affect Theory, Detachment theory, Encounters, Love, Mood, non-sovereignty, optimism, Ordinariness, pedagogy, psychoanalysis, Theory of this Blog, writing | Tags: adults, affect, children, Lydia_Davis, memory, psychoanalysis, things, writing
1. The Test
There’s a can of blueberries at the back of the shelf amid dust and flour mites or whatever it is that gets into the rice, like an old writing file where you made a deposit in the darkness of a late style. As though berries too syrupy even for ice cream and the cheesecakes your mother never got to make were just waiting around for you to be found, like that child in the game. (more…)
Filed under: affect, Affect Theory, Mood, psychoanalysis, sexuality, supervalent_thought, writing | Tags: affect, emotion, Glee, mood, Sedgwick, theory, Tomkins, writing
These are our questions for the MLA roundtable. Section one takes up genealogies of affect theory; section two takes up the problem of affect in the historical present; section three takes up a variety of concerns about queer theory, sexuality, racialization, specific cases and archives, and modes of orientation that are in proximity to whatever we might call affect but in different idioms. You can download them here. mla roundtable 2011
745. Affecting Affect Theory is scheduled to take place at 1:45+3:00 p.m. on 08-JAN-12 in 615, WSCC; Washington State Convention Center, 800 Convention Place (Pike St. and 8th Ave.)
Affect Theory Roundtable Questions, MLA 2012
Authors: Lauren Berlant, Ann Cvetkovich, Jonathan Flatley, Neville Hoad, Heather Love, José E. Muñoz, Tavia Nyong’o
I. Genealogies of Affect Theory
1. How do we think about the different trajectories of affect theory now, especially as the Deleuzian/Massumian project/idiom has become so important to its critical circulation? How do we think the proximity of public feelings, minor affects, psychoanalysis, Sedgwickian syncretism (Buddhism, Tomkins, Klein), and affective labor’s version of affect-as-immateriality in relation to the Spinozan tradition? How to keep the event of affect open to maintaining the multiplicity of traditions, trajectories, tendencies, and critical tactics? Is spanning all traditions important to ways we think about addressing future problems?
2. Affect vs/alongside mood, feeling, emotion etc. What are the stakes of synthesizing these different ways of talking to our about states of the sensorium?
3. Cavell (a great affect theorist who is not often included in the genealogies of affect theory) says that professional philosophy has been emancipated from an obligation to be therapeutic, but that it should be haunted by that very emancipation. What about the critical work we do: what about questions of theory and utility, of reparativity, of failure?
4. In response to thoughts about genealogies and the increasing institutionalization of Deleuzian affect studies, I would like to take the chance to think in some detail about genealogies for public feelings/feel tank type affect studies. The Cavell thing got me thinking about other possibly overlooked figures. (more…)
Filed under: Belonging, class, depression, Detachment theory, economy, emotion, Mood, non-sovereignty, optimism, Ordinariness, pedagogy, Politics, psychoanalysis, teaching, Theory of this Blog, writing | Tags: amitava_kumar, crisis_of_the_university, fantasy, Latour, realism, the_ordinary, Zizek
(This is a very lightly revised version of the paper I tried to deliver at the American Studies Association conference as a performance piece that also riffed on the talks just given around me: a complete failure as a performance. Chronologically it was written after the previous two combover pieces were written, and so represents a development of the idea I’ve been serializing here.)
Amitava [Kumar] originally called this panel “The Message Chain.” Its idea was to ask some scholars who see themselves as writers, how, for them, a particular space becomes a “locale” for writing, an event that requires not just attention and consideration but a decision to write outside of the usual academic idiom or medium. This was to be a panel about crossing over, not into death, but toward a bigger life for writing. A spatial impact becomes-event in this view when it induces a communicative action–writing, teaching, and performing–you know, the kinds of things that our careers are made from, although few of us would admit to having the career as our ambition. But that is because ambition is one of the obscene affects of capitalist culture. It’s hard not to think about it, though, when someone asks you to talk about “crossover” writing: when you’re crossing over it’s because your ambition isn’t hiding in a repetition but in sincerity, in the desire to do something for an audience whose relation to reading is unprofessional or outside of the norms our professions perform.
It would not be too strong to say that the capitalist subject is distinguished by its education in judging ambition.