April 9-10, 2016; Alte Universitätsbibliothek (Universitätsstraße 4/Eingang: Schuhstraße), 91054 Erlangen
Organized by Katharina Gerund and Heike Paul
Following a broader ‘turn to affect’ (Patricia Clough) in the humanities and the social sciences, this conference seeks to investigate public feeling – as articulation, representation, and cultural and institutional practice – and the various functions it has in every-day life, in political communication, in allegedly private realms as well as in constructions of “intimate public spheres” (Lauren Berlant). The conference brings together scholars from different disciplines (sociology, literary studies, political science, art history, and media studies) in order to discuss the changing cultural specificities and the global impact of “affective economies” (Sara Ahmed) and “feeling rules” (Arlie Hochschild) in a framework of transnational and comparative cultural studies. In the course of our two-day conference, we will address phenomena such as a post-9/11 political culture and its repertoire of affects; strategies/processes of (political) inclusion and exclusion via affective protocols; fear, anger, and (romantic) love as, purportedly, global “structures of feeling” (Raymond Williams); the (re)turn to/of aesthetics and affect in contemporary (popular) culture and art; and the role of affect for contemporary protest movements and political opposition. From the various cultural and disciplinary angles involved, we will shed light on the ways in which public feeling-scholarship extends – and still needs to be extended further – beyond its current US-centered, Euro-American framework. Topics include how affects and emotions impact individual and collective identity formation in the age of globalization; how affect and feeling are entangled with cultural difference and constructions of otherness, and what kind of political work they perform in every-day situations and in 'states of exception'.