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Rhythm, sight and sound: work in times of uncertainty 
Sandro Simon (University of Cologne)
Valerie Haensch (Anthropological Museum Berlin)
Ian M. Cook (Allegra Lab)
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Panel Discussion
Start time:
28 March, 2021 at
Time zone: Europe/London
Session slots:

Short Abstract:

Skilled practices, routinized action and work provide temporal orientations and produce familiar sensory experiences. In moments of uncertainty, however, such habitual engagements are challenged. Focusing on sight, sound and movement we ask what practices and rhythms (re-)form in relation to crisis.

Long Abstract:

Skilled practices, routinised action and work provide temporal orientations and produce familiar sensory experiences and engagements with the world. Their rhythmic repetitions bring forth difference, bridge planned and situated actions, and mark moments of movement and pause. Ultimately, they allow individuals and groups to apprehend the future.

In moments of crisis and uncertainty, however, such habitual sensory and rhythmic engagements are challenged and might become fragmented, affecting individual and social identities, relations and trajectories. By taking these sensual disturbances and temporal frictions as a starting point of inquiry, the panel explores how work (in a broad sense) and its embodied practices are experienced and challenged. Sight, sound, movement and rhythm, which are strongly connected and usually guide working processes, might need sensual and bodily (re-)adjustments.

Focusing on sight, sound and movement we ask what forms of (new) practices and rhythms are being (re-)produced and emerge in relation to crisis. How does improvisation and creativity provide agentivity and orientation in uncertain circumstances? How does the absence or the arrhythmicity of action (waiting, unemployment, ruined landscapes etc.) shape these processes and experiences and how do they inform and translate into audiovisual production and representation? How do visuality and sound relate to each other in this respect? And how can we audio-visually approach the sensuous-experiential dimension of work in moments of crisis?

We invite empirical, theoretical or methodological submissions in textual, visual, audio or multimodal formats that address the question of work, its sensory engagement and rhythmicity in times of uncertainty.

During the first 50-minute session we will discuss all 8 presentations with the aid of an assigned discussant and collaborative online notetaking tools. During the second 50-minute session we will discuss the common and divergent themes, ideas and concepts that link the presentations.

If non-presenting members of the audience wish to see extended versions of the presentations (which will exist in some cases), then please email the conveyers in advance of the sessions.

Accepted papers:

Session 1