(Image is speaker's own created in homage to Tammy Rae Carland's Lesbian Beds (2002) series

Feel Tanks as Method: Institutional Bad Feelings

Sociology Department: Research Development Fund

Goldsmiths College, UoL

1 & 9 July 2020

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‘Feel Tanks’ (a spin of ‘think tank’) derive their name from one cell of a larger group known as the Public Feelings Project which operated from the conviction that ‘understanding affective investment can be the a starting point for theoretical insight into the workings of capitalism, racism and sexism within power structures.’ (Cvetkovich, 2012)

Through over a fifteen workshops, seminars and lectures in the UK and internationally, Chloe Turner has been using ‘Feel Tanks’ as both intellectual enquiry and call-to-arms, to consider how to sustain living under capitalism in the current moment. 

In the continuing struggles against global anti-Black, queer/transphobic conservative governance, pandemic "new normal“ living and the stripping of arts and humanities funding, nurturing spaces of care and connection have never felt more pressing. How do we bring into being the feminist space we want to be a part of? A space where we gift our labour to each other as opposed to institutions, co-create the
spaces to weather the coming disasters and mobilise a resistance that centres pleasure and joy.

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Feel Tanks as Method: Institutional Bad Feelings

This two-part seminar series with Postgraduate Students (1st July) and Sociology Staff members (9th July) through using the 'Feel Tank: Exhaustion' example, will explore how feel tanks might be used as methodological approach to recognise experiences of being that are not easily put into words yet constitute how inequalities and injustice are experienced and have effects. 

These two sessions were included as part of a Research Developed Fund project in the Sociology Department, Goldsmiths College UoL led by Dr Yasmin Gunaratnam and Dr Kiran Grewal.