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SIEF Working Group on Body, Affects, Senses, and Emotions

The SIEF Working Group on Body, Affects, Senses, and Emotions (BASE) addresses one of the most dynamic fields in contemporary cultural research. Here different disciplines and research traditions meet in order to investigate the very nexus of human culture – the interplay between society, behavior, belief, and history. These are the academic common grounds where ethnology, folklore and anthropology meet philosophy and psychology, sociology and cultural studies, neuro- and cognitive sciences. In this context, ethnology has mostly focused on the kind of situated practice that characterizes everyday life – how bodies are conditioned, affects appear and the senses are tuned, often in a particular material environment. The long-standing interest in different aspects of biopolitics, emotional norms, and the body as symbol and metaphor has been complemented with newly arising issues of being and becoming, bodily experiences and potentialities. The study of body, affects, senses, and emotions opens to various theoretical and epistemological approaches as well as a wide range of research fields. This working group will develop the network between scholars in ethnology and folklore committed to research in this multifaceted area, and open up for inspiration and collaboration with neighboring disciplines.

Since the working group is still in the making it will welcome all suggestions from participants as to what its thematic, methodological and theoretical focus should be in the upcoming years. On the practical level the objectives are to:

Before the next SIEF conference, the working group is going to find a feasible modus for cooperation in research and in the disciplinary and cross-disciplinary exchange of ideas. In order to give this a flying start, an inaugural meeting and workshop are planned for autumn 2016 in Sweden. The theme for the workshop is still in the making; the invitation will come in due time. If you are interested in joining the working group and staying informed about the planned activities, please send your e-mail address to the secretary. Please contact the chair to discuss ideas for further activities.

Chair: Prof. Jonas Frykman, Department of Art and Cultural Sciences, University of Lund, Sweden,

Secretary: Dr. Kerstin Pfeiffer, School of Management & Languages, Heriot-Watt University, Edinburgh, UK,


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