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By Mario Mieli

Cultural experiences, sexual reviews, Social reports, Homosexuality

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Extra info for Homosexuality and Liberation: Elements of a Gay Critique

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It is important to note here that ‘the crowd’ is itself an unstable object: early work on crowds considers the crowd as a mob, which is physically co-present ‘on the street’. More recent work considers ‘the crowd’ not necessarily as a physical mass, but as the perception of a mass, which is affected by the media, and other technologies of connection, which allow ‘feelings with’, without physical proximity. In his early writings, Marx describes ‘man’s feeling’ as ‘truly ontological affirmations of his essence’ (Marx 1975: 375).

Perhaps, unlike the saying, what goes round does not always come round. Focusing on emotions is what will allow me to track the uneven effects of this failure of return. uk Accessed 30 September 2003. html Accessed 21 February 2004. In Strange Encounters (2000), I offer an approach to ‘othering’ by examining how others are recognised as strangers, as ‘bodies out of place’, through economies of vision and touch. I will be building on this argument in The Cultural Politics of Emotion, by focusing on how relations of othering work through emotions; for example, othering takes place through the attribution of feelings to others, or by transforming others into objects of feeling.

The ‘nation’ becomes a shared ‘object of feeling’ through the orientation that is taken towards it. As such, emotions are performative (see Chapter 4) and they involve speech acts (Chapter 5), which depend on past histories, at the same time as they generate effects. When we talk about the displacement between objects of emotion, we also need to consider the circulation of words for emotion. For example, the word ‘mourns’ might get attached to some subjects (some bodies more than others represent the nation in mourning), and it might get attached to some objects (some losses more than others may count as losses for this nation).

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