Affective Engagement in Knowledge-making
Keywords:affect, body, entanglement, posthuman feminism, post-qualitative
This article provides an overview of the discussion animating the track “Doing research in technoscience as affective engagement” organised at the VIII STS Italia Conference. By acknowledging the inheritance of feminist STS scholars in expanding the theoretical scope of care beyond its traditional sites, this session was devoted to exploring knowledge production as a matter of care as well as a form of affective engagement and entanglement with multiple Others while doing research. Two contributions were presented. The first ethnographically investigates Canadian blood donation practices by drawing on Haraway’s SF figure to develop what the speaker calls “Sanguine Figuration”. The second presentation relies on research of women’s animist practices amongst horses in Swiss Alps through a filmmaking practice influenced by Haraway’s work on the natureculture continuum and situated knowledge. Both studies embody efforts to develop non-representational research practices and experimental approaches showing the affective entanglement between researchers and researched, subject and object. Further, these contributions have highlighted the importance of conceptual creativity and imagination in building an apparatus that enables accounting for affective engagements in doing research in STS.