Abandoned ideas and the energies of failure
Peer reviewed, Journal article
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Original versionSjøvoll, V., Grothen, G., & Frers, L. (2020). Abandoned ideas and the energies of failure. Emotion, Space and Society, 36, 100709. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.emospa.2020.100709
Our academic life is ripe with failures and things abandoned, with hurt and feelings of defeat and despair. Already as students, we learn how to hide and tuck away such experiences and the impact they have on us. As a result of this the surfaces of our texts, our presentations, the things we make, have come to resemble certain industrial products, cleansed of any traces of dirt, human toil, crookedness and suffering. However, that which we hide tends to live on, even when we succeed to forget its existence – as bodily tensions and shame, roaming around in our interiors, eating their way into our practises. In this article, three authors, together and by themselves, explore the hidden geographies of abandoned ideas and failures both as a cultural phenomenon and as bodily experiences. Our hope in doing this is to open up for more gentle and affirmative practices, practises that release the energies of the hidden; the hurtful, the minor, the modest, the bent, tentative and crooked. To be able to resist, to counteract we have to begin with what we are forced to forget, hide and suppress.