Unpacking Sensual Ruptures and Rhythms in the City: Methodological Devices for a Sociology of Sensual Translations

Monday, July 14, 2014: 3:45 PM
Room: 417
Oral Presentation
Hanna GÖBEL , Department of Movement Science/Performance Studies, University of Hamburg, Hamburg, Germany
Studying urban sensual experiences through film and photo cameras is one of the most intense settings through which an argument about the performativity of methods and their epistemological and ontological consequences can be developed. Drawing on the recent developments in the realms of a 'sociology of translation' and the methodological devices offered by the ontologies of 'urban assemblages', this paper wishes to unpack the specific case of visual, acoustic, haptic, taste and smell related ruptures and reconfigurations of body rhythms in the city. 

The case will be unfolded in three steps. First, I will focus on specific moments when sensual ruptures occur and reorder the body rhythm of movements through the city. I will draw on ethnographic field work in the cities of Hamburg and London introducing different moving crowds in political settings of protest, shopping related activities and transport practices in which the five sensual activites are challenged in various ways, overlap, interact and compete. The rhythmanalysis as offered by Henri Lefebrve is going to be applied in a fresh way showing how sensual translations become social makings and unmakings. In the second step, I will stress the epistemological consequences when extending the agency of observation through film and photo cameras and show how to follow the new ontologies that occur through these lenses. In the third step, I am going to argue for a sociology of sensual translations offered when taking into account the methodological agencies of film and photography in settings of urban experiences.