Audience emotions

Prof. Doris Kolesch / Prof. Hubert Knoblauch

winter term 2017/18 - summer term 2018


The third designated tandem will be formed by an expert in theater studies (Kolesch) and a sociologist (Knoblauch) who will work on affectivity and emotionality in performance situations. The tandem will focus on a phenomenon that is exemplary for social collectives and is thereby representative for the tension between communitarization and sociation in mediatized Affective Societies. The spectrum ranges from the frequently mediatized induction of affect in audiences attending major public events up to the diverse procedures and techniques for inducing affect in the performing arts. The empirical reference points are the emotional processes of audiences in performance situations that are viewed as differentiated, but, in their form, special resonance spaces of affect.

A particular interest is in comparing different social fields extending from sports over theater to religion that encompass both local and mediatized audiences. The tandem is combining this with the challenge of linking different strands of research on the emotions of audiences: These should extend from audience research in theater studies, film studies, and the anthropology of art up to research in sociology, communication studies, or social anthropology. Therefore, the tandem will forge links to further working groups and thereby probably open up a unique comparative perspective.