The Ethico-Aesthetics of Affect and a Sensational Pedagogy

Stephanie Springgay


This essay’s main purpose is to sketch the relations between affect, politics, and everyday life in order to think sensationally about pedagogy. Thinking affectively about politics differs from approaches that are a direct analysis of signs and discourses, morals and rationales. As opposed to an understanding of affect as something to be captured, controlled, rationalized, and suppressed, I attempt to reclaim the affective in order to consider the body’s intensities and compositions in knowledge production. Using a performance/interventionist artwork “The Lactation Station Breastmilk Bar” as a site from which to think about an affective, and thus an aesthetic approach to politics, I emphasize the importance of sensation in knowledge production.


curriculum studies; contemporary visual art; sensation; affect

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