CfP: Failing at Feelings. Historical Perspectives (1800-2000) (Event, 12/2016, Berlin); DL: 20.08.2016

Max Planck Institute for Human Development in Berlin (Web)

Time: 15th and 16th December 2016
Venue: Berlin
Proposals by 20th August 2016

Common to older attempts at constructing an emotionology and recent attempts to conceive of emotions as practices is their tendency to overemphasize successful emotions. While people often expect or desire to experience a particular emotion in a particular situation, sometimes the emotions just don’t appear or don’t last for very long. Emotions must be practiced, but these practices often fail. The conference inquires into the concrete historical and social circumstances that condition this failure to feel. Against this background, participants will also discuss the successful production of emotions, the role of certain institutions, discursive frames, competing norms, significant others, and divergent expectations, as well as the bearing of conflicts and situative factors. From this perspective, the failure to feel says something about the possibilities of successful feeling, and thus says something about the historicity of emotions.

The conference will deal with four distinct fields where this failing at feelings can be observed, and will focus on European and North American history during the nineteenth and twentieth centuries: Read more … (Web)