1. bookVolume 6 (2019): Issue 1 (December 2019)
    Cultural Participation, Social Media Affect and Art
Journal Details
License
Format
Journal
eISSN
2246-3755
First Published
01 Nov 2014
Publication timeframe
2 times per year
Languages
English
access type Open Access

Exploring the Affective Politics of Political Beauty

Published Online: 03 Apr 2021
Volume & Issue: Volume 6 (2019) - Issue 1 (December 2019) - Cultural Participation, Social Media Affect and Art
Page range: 1 - 16
Journal Details
License
Format
Journal
eISSN
2246-3755
First Published
01 Nov 2014
Publication timeframe
2 times per year
Languages
English
Abstract

TO UNDERSTAND THE INTRICATE INTERCONNECTION BETWEEN POLITICS AND AFFECTS, I EXAMINE A PERFORMANCE OF THE BERLIN-BASED ARTIST COLLECTIVE ZENTRUM FÜR POLITISCHE SCHÖNHEIT (CENTER FOR POLITICAL BEAUTY, ZPS), IN WHICH ARTIST ACTIVISTS STAGED A HORSEBACK RIDE TO FASTEN A MANIFESTO OF TEN THESES OF POLITICAL BEAUTY ON THE FAÇADE OF THE GERMAN BUNDESTAG. INTERCONNECTING THEORIES OF POLITICAL DIFFERENCE (MARCHART 2010), WHICH DIFFERENTIATE BETWEEN THE ONTOLOGICAL REALM OF ‘THE POLITICAL’ AND ONTIC REALIZATIONS OF ‘POLITICS’, AND POLITICAL THEORIES OF AFFECT, I APPROACH THE AFFECTIVE DIMENSIONS OF POLITICAL DIFFERENCE AS AFFECTIVE POLITICS. BUILDING ON BARGETZ’S (2014) “POLITICAL GRAMMAR OF FEELINGS”, I SITUATE THE PERFORMANCE’S TEMPORARY INSTITUTIONS AND INTERRUPTIONS OF ‘POLITICS’ AND ‘THE POLITICAL’, AS WELL AS ‘FEELING POLITICS’ AND ‘POLITICS OF FEELING’ RESPECTIVELY, AS AFFECTIVE ENCOUNTERS TO EXPERIENCE OR ENACT POLITICAL BEAUTY. POLITICAL BEAUTY, IN AN ANTAGONISTIC FRAMEWORK THAT FOREGROUNDS CONTINGENCY, CONFLICT AND ABSENCE, MOBILIZES AFFECTS AS INHERENTLY AMBIVALENT AND CONTENTIOUS. AS A CHALLENGE TO THE DIAGNOSIS OF AN INEVITABLE POST-POLITICAL CONDITION, I DISCUSS THE POTENTIAL OF POLITICAL BEAUTY AS AFFECTIVE POLITICS TO POTENTIALLY RE-POLITICIZE POLITICS. BORROWING FROM DERRIDA (1994), I CONDUCT A SPECTRAL READING OF ZPS’ TEN THESES AND CARVE OUT THREE ANALYTICAL VIGNETTES – BEAUTY, VITALITY AND LONGING – TO CONCEPTUALIZE POLITICAL BEAUTY AS OSCILLATING BETWEEN THE DESIRE AND HOPE FOR POLITICAL CHANGE, WHICH CAN NEVER BE FULLY SATISFIED, AND A DISMISSAL OF (POLITICAL) UGLINESS AND DEATH. IN THE END, POLITICAL BEAUTY ESCAPES A DEFINITION BECAUSE IT IS, AFTER ALL, NOTHING BUT AN IMPOSSIBLE PROJECT FOR POLITICS AND AFFECTS OF AN UNKNOWN FUTURE.

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