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… happiness… Dezembro 26, 2012

Posted by paulo jorge vieira in Uncategorized.
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Happy-Face

Emotions are quite sociable. We are moved after all by the  proximity of others. We feel with and for others. Sociability can even be a feeling: when you feel sociable you want to be with others. Sociability implies not only the existence of proximate others, but also the enjoyment of proximity. The sociable person likes the company of others. In this paper, I want to consider happiness as a form of sociability rather than the happiness of sociability. It is a truism that happiness is happiest when it is shared with others. And yet does happiness simply bring us together? A social bond might be created if the same things make us happy. In turn, those who are not made happy by the same things might threaten our happiness. If emotions are sociable, then sociability might need to be theorised in terms of the restriction as well as enjoyment of company. Happiness might generate the very company we like as a company of likes.

How can we think about the sociability of good feeling? My starting point is not to assume there is something called affect (or for that matter emotion) that stands apart or has autonomy, as if it corresponds to an object in the world. I begin with the messiness of the experiential, the unfolding of bodies into the world, and what I have called ‘the drama of contingency’, how we are touched by what is near (Ahmed, 2006: 124).

 Sociable happiness” de Sara Ahmed, Emotion, Space and Society 1 (2008) 10–13

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