Affect Theory and Contemporary Politics : Lecture and Discussion Evening

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Friday 26th of August 20:00
Affect theory is an exciting and emergent means of understanding ourselves as humans above and beyond the constraints of rational thought.

Affect is a pre-cognitive function that shapes perception at a fundamental level. Affect connects mind and body, the two work in harmony instantaneously to direct a specific type of action in response to a specific instance. The mind creates an affective reaction that is realized within the body. Affects are so convincing because more than considered, they are felt. Affect is created in everything we experience in day-to-day life, established and encouraged through familiarity and convention.

Existing conceptualizations of affect face limitations, but incorporating key ideas from the Frankfurt School can offer form and purpose to affect, which in turn works to breathe new life into Critical Theory.

The evening will consist of a brief lecture and an open discussion. The focus will surround the role affect plays in contemporary politics in the West.

Peter Zuurbier is a PhD student in the School of Communication at Simon Fraser University in Vancouver, Canada. His forthcoming book, co-written with Frédérik Lesage, is coming out in the next few weeks through Peter Lang Publishing. It is entitled: ‘Masamune’s Blade: A Proposition for Dialectic Affect Research’.

The book involves both the development of a dialectic conceptualization of affect theory that combines the work of Deleuze and Guattari with the ideas of the Frankfurt School, and an accompanying research method that attends to the unique qualities of affect.

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