Hauntology
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Hauntology
All things hauntological, atemporal and future past nostalgic in music, media, art and ideas
Curated by Sean Albiez
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To Nostalgize: Mixing Memory with Affect and Desire | Sedikides, Constantine, Wildschut, Tim, Routledge, Clay, Arndt, Jamie, Hepper, Erica G. and Zhou, Xinyue

From 2015 - 'Nostalgia is a self-conscious, bittersweet but predominantly positive and fundamentally social emotion. It arises from fond memories mixed with yearning about one's childhood, close relationships, or atypically positive events, and it entails a redemption trajectory. It is triggered by a variety of external stimuli or internal states, is prevalent, is universal, and is experienced across ages. Nostalgia serves a self-oriented function (by raising self-positivity and facilitating perceptions of a positive future), an existential function (by increasing perceptions of life as meaningful), and a sociality function (by increasing social connectedness, reinforcing socially oriented action tendencies, and promoting prosocial behavior). These functions are independent of the positive affect that nostalgia may incite. Also, nostalgia-elicited sociality often mediates the self-positivity and existential functions. In addition, nostalgia maintains psychological and physiological homeostasis along the following regulatory cycle: (i) Noxious stimuli, as general as avoidance motivation and as specific as self-threat (negative performance feedback), existential threat (meaninglessness, mortality awareness), social threat (loneliness, social exclusion), well-being threat (stress, boredom), or, perhaps surprisingly, physical coldness intensify felt nostalgia; (ii) in turn, nostalgia (measured or manipulated) alleviates the impact of threat by curtailing the influence of avoidance motivation on approach motivation, buttressing the self from threat, limiting defensive responding to meaninglessness, assuaging existential anxiety, repairing interpersonal isolation, diminishing the blow of stress, relieving boredom through meaning reestablishment, or producing the sensation of physical warmth. Nostalgia has a checkered history, but is now rehabilitated as an adaptive psychological resource.'
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blissblog: in memoriam | Simon Reynolds

blissblog: in memoriam | Simon Reynolds | Hauntology | Scoop.it
A great piece by Simon Reynolds on the intersection of personal memory and loss
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Haunted by the Holidays: 'A Christmas Carol' and the Ghost of Christmas Past - Greg Garrett

Haunted by the Holidays: 'A Christmas Carol' and the Ghost of Christmas Past - Greg Garrett | Hauntology | Scoop.it

'We are haunted during the holidays by things done and left undone, but especially by the Ghost of Christmas Past. You can hear that melancholy and nostalgia in many of our best-known Christmas songs, from Sam Smith's old-fashioned new version of "Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas" to "I'll be Home for Christmas" to "Merry Christmas Darling." Why, in this season of joy, are we so often brought to the point of tears? Well partly it's because the past, as Mr. Faulkner said, isn't past. It's always present, swirling around us, reminding us of who we were, are, and ought to be (and maybe where we ought to be, and with whom).

Those ghosts may sadden us or frighten us, but critics who work within a literary field called Hauntology argue that in stories from The Iliad to Hamlet to The Sixth Sense, these ghosts of longing may haunt us from our past, but they simultaneously beckon us forward toward our future. A good haunting may, in fact, be just the thing we require to achieve our best destiny, to become the people we are called to become. And what better time than the holidays to face those ghosts head-on and amend our lives?' - Greg Garrett

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Decline and Fall of the History Men | Standpoint

Decline and Fall of the History Men | Standpoint | Hauntology | Scoop.it

'Are we living through the end of history? Not in the Hegelian sense that Francis Fukuyama used the phrase in the immediate aftermath of the Cold War, meaning that with the triumph of liberal democracy, world history had reached its ultimate goal. As subsequent events have shown, this was a case of wishful thinking by a political scientist, not a historian. 

 

No, I mean the end of history as the central pillar of high culture and national identity. History in this sense is not the same as historiography or historical scholarship, of which there is more than ever before. Nor is it the same as the popularisation of history, history as pure entertainment, which is also flourishing. What has become problematic is the assumption that general historical knowledge, an informed consciousness of our past, is the essential framework for Western civilisation. It is the decline of history in this sense that lies behind the heated debates about the teaching of history at school and university. The loss of such a temporal dimension has brought about a profound change in the outlook of the West: a loss of organic connection, not only with those who came before us, but with our place in the world. Clive James memorably described this phenomenon as "cultural amnesia", and Eric Voegelin adopted the theological concept of "anamnesis" to describe our attempts to preserve transcendent memories. Yet such remembrances of time past, whether they express rage against the dying of the light of history as a force in intellectual life, or acquiescence in its oblivion, are at best rearguard actions.' - Daniel Johnson

 

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Digital Memory and the Archive - Wolfgang Ernst (University of Minnesota Press)

Digital Memory and the Archive - Wolfgang Ernst (University of Minnesota Press) | Hauntology | Scoop.it

'Digital Memory and the Archive, the first English-language collection of the German media theorist’s work, brings together essays that present Wolfgang Ernst’s controversial materialist approach to media theory and history. His insights are central to the emerging field of media archaeology, which uncovers the role of specific technologies and mechanisms, rather than content, in shaping contemporary culture and society.' 

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Nostalgia: Past, Present, and Future | Constantine Sedikides, Tim Wildschut, Jamie Arndt, and Clay Routledge

From 2008 - 'Traditionally, nostalgia has been conceptualized as a medical disease and a psychiatric disorder. Instead, we argue that nostalgia is a predominantly positive, self-relevant, and social emotion serving key psychological functions. Nostalgic narratives reflect more positive than negative affect, feature the self as the protagonist, and are embedded in social context. Nostalgia is triggered by dysphoric states, such as negative mood and loneliness. Finally, nostalgia generates positive affect, increases self-esteem, fosters social connectedness, and alleviates existential threat.'
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Karen Gregory | Weird Solidarities

Karen Gregory | Weird Solidarities | Hauntology | Scoop.it

'Whereas past generations longed to know if there is an afterlife, today we face a living hauntology in the form of our data presences. We live on not only past death, as the recent Facebook end-of-year debacles have poignantly demonstrated, but we live beyond ourselves in and through black-boxed algorithms and their architectures of capture and deployment.' - Karen Gregory

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Imagine Finding Me | Chino Otsuka Superimposes Her Adult Self Into Childhood Photos | Spoon & Tamago

Imagine Finding Me | Chino Otsuka Superimposes Her Adult Self Into Childhood Photos | Spoon & Tamago | Hauntology | Scoop.it
Imagine Finding Me | Chino Otsuka Superimposes Her Adult Self Into Childhood Photos
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Henry Molaison: the amnesiac we'll never forget

Henry Molaison: the amnesiac we'll never forget | Hauntology | Scoop.it

'One of the fascinating, unsettling impulses in reading Henry's life is that sense of identity being a bundle of all of the stories we tell ourselves about ourselves. Henry loved to relate the few clear memories of his childhood, over and over, though he lacked a context for them and the face he surprised himself with in the mirror each morning did not quite connect with them. Corkin heard those stories many times over the years; every time she left the room for a minute and returned to Henry he introduced himself as if they had never met before, and told the stories again. Some were the family lore of how his father had moved north from Louisiana; others involved going roller skating as a child in the park, taking banjo lessons, driving with his parents along the Mohawk Trail' - Tim Adams

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“Sampling The Spectral” – Blake Durham - Spring 2012 Conference Paper

“Sampling The Spectral” – Blake Durham - Spring 2012 Conference Paper | Hauntology | Scoop.it

'... in this paper, I will attempt to demonstrate what I consider an underdeveloped — perhaps even previously undeveloped — avenue within experimental music. I contend that The Caretaker’s latest work, entitled Patience (After Sebald), raises important questions about the nature of memory through the sampling and manipulation of an early 20th century recording of the Franz Schubert song cycle Winterreise. I will discuss the conceptual situation of Patience (After Sebald), in particular, the critical theory concept of hauntology, and how differing notions of the ontology of art music versus popular music affect the critical interpretation of hauntological works.' Blake Durham

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