Individuality in Affect

After exploring the World of Matter map I began thinking of affect in a very interesting way. There was one subject/topic on the site that stood out to me the most: the “Black Gold” ecology. The vivid images of men covered in oil as they clean the river and the pollution of the river taking over their lives, are still stuck in my head. It is incredible the extent the exploitation of one natural resource has on the environment and the people.

This idea of a dynamic ecology left me thinking deeply about affect and characteristics of affect. Brenner talks about how affect “is social or psychological in origin” and how the “’atmosphere’ and the environment literally gets into the individual. She furthers my thinking by stating the idea that she is using the term “’transmission of affect’ to capture a process that is social in origin but biological and physical in effect” (Brennan 1-2). In other words, affect is a process; a form of development, and what I know about processes is that they occur over time. I want to look at affect as a catalyst, a factor of change that occurs over time. Affect also affects the ecology as a whole, and it affects people in groups, but I believe that affect pertains to the individual.

By pertaining to the individual, I want to form a notion of affect: I want to think about affect as an entity and process that alters the course and/or creates our paths, through the idea that affect pertains to the individual. Every human being undergoes their own changes as a result of affect, and no two people are affected in identical ways. It is an inevitable change that occurs over time.

I wanted to incorporate this idea of affect—affect affecting the individual—into my ecology project. Not only do I want to analyze pedestrian traffic, flow, patterns, and behavior, but I also want to explore how the environment and surrounding affect people individually and not as a whole. Perhaps that girl walking as she listens to “Beyoncé” on her headphones is having a more upbeat day than the man who has to carry three suitcases on a packed subway to Grand Central. In many instances affect is intangible, but I find it interesting and further want to analyze how tangible and different forms of affect, affect people individually.

-Patricio

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~ by pja275 on March 3, 2015.

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