Skip to content

Toggle service links

Affectivity and Liminality: Conceptualising the dynamics of suspended transition

Sunday, 17 November 2013, 18:00 - Tuesday, 19 November 2013, 16:00

Brighton, UK

An exploration of a new way of conceptualising and explaining problematic situations and experiences involving ‘troubled’ scenes of transition

This event is part of the project 'Affectivity and Liminality' led by Prof Paul Stenner in collaboration with Megan Clinch, Johanna Motzkau and Monica Greco (Goldsmiths College), and funded through the European Science Foundation (ESF) Exploratory Workshop scheme.

The aim of the workshop is to explore a new way of conceptualising and explaining problematic situations and experiences involving ‘troubled’ scenes of transition. By synthesising conceptual work on affectivity and liminality, social scientists working at the intersection of diverse fields will clarify the social and experiential dynamics of a selection of difficult and controversial situations, or ‘liminal hotspots’.

Briefly, liminal hotspots are situations where people find themselves in a long-term (or even permanent) state of ‘in-betweeness’ or transition. For example, precarious labour conditions that hold workers suspended between employment and unemployment; flows of migration that yield hybrid identities entailing both ‘belonging’ and ‘not belonging’; and stress-related illnesses that leave sufferers stuck in a diagnostic limbo as neither legitimately sick nor healthy. Critically, as well a being ‘liminal’ such situations are also highly affective, because, in the face of suspended transition, the usual norms and habits that lend structure to everyday conduct and subjectivity are also interrupted.

During the workshop the concept of liminal hotspots will be thoroughly interrogated and refined. Subsequently the discussion generated by the event will form the basis of a new approach that will integrate existing work concerned with affectivity and liminality, and enable social scientists to better understand situations of suspended transition, and suggest ways in which they can be encountered and managed more effectively.

Please refer to the attached document below for futher information related to the workshop.

Access to the document is restricted, so if any queries, please contact Megan Clinch:


Related blog entries

Thinking about affectivity and liminality together, by Paul Stenner and Megan Clinch (posted the 1st of July, 2013)

The small things: attempting to manage the long-term liminality of homelessness in London, by Megan Clinch (posted the 4th of September, 2013)

Liminality and Traces of Affectivity in the Work of Arnold van Gennep, by Bjørn Thomassen (posted the 9th of Oct, 2013)