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Accepted Paper:

Searching for affective materiality via narratives  
Anna Kajander (University of Jyväskylä)

Paper short abstract:

Material objects of home can affect our emotional states. However, these affects are often unverbalized and connected with sensory experiences. Are narratives such as interviews and writings therefore usable research materials for the scrutiny of affective materiality?

Paper long abstract:

Various material culture studies show how material objects of everyday life can be tools for creating feelings of safety, comfort, and homeliness. Some items are important in supporting identity, life stories and feelings of belonging. In the current abundance of things and western consumerism, material objects can cause uncertainty and create feelings of imbalanced, unsustainable, and unethical living. Material items can affect our feelings and emotions in different ways, but their impact is often difficult to verbalize. They are not always understood as affective actors, but rather as practical tools or subjects of actions and given meanings. Also, affect happens in interaction between things and people, and it is connected with bodily presence and sensory experiences. These aspects raise questions of possible research materials. Can affect of material objects be scrutinized via verbalized narratives, interviews or writings? In this presentation, I will introduce materials and preliminary analysis of my current research, which is focused on affective objects of home. I will introduce two different types of materials. First is a set of interviews which I made in 2021 in Zoom due to covid restrictions. The second consists of written narratives collected by an archive. I will discuss how I have tried to find and scrutinize the emotional and sensory yet unverbalized affects of different material items of home.

Panel Body03
Mediating affect in the world of uncertainties
  Session 1 Thursday 8 June, 2023, -