Aesthetic Formations: Media, Religion, and the Senses by Birgit Meyer

By Birgit Meyer

The imperative subject of this quantity is the incorporation of newly available mass media into practices of non secular mediation in numerous settings, together with Pentecostal-charismatic church buildings and Islamic hobbies, and using spiritual types and pictures within the sphere of radio and cinema. in line with a long term cooperation, the participants study the function of faith and media within the emergence and sustenance of recent ‘aesthetic formations’ that attract the physique and the senses, and generate new varieties of binding and moods of belonging in our time.

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All the while, Mãe Stella remained seated, nodding her turbanted head appreciatively when the merits of the winners were proclaimed, distributing vague smiles to no one in particular. At one point she whispered something in the ear of Gilberto Gil, who was sitting to her right. And she also communicated something to the mayor of Salvador, who was sitting to her left. But that was for us to see, not to hear. For she never addressed the audience. No word of welcome and no word of gratitude. Nothing.

Latour’s Reassembling the Social (2005) has been a major source of inspiration. I agree with Latour that “it is not enough for sociologists to recognize that a group is made, ‘reproduced,’ or ‘constructed’ through many means and through many tools” (39). , 38), but is being “reassembled” in a dynamic process of ongoing mediation. This question stands central in a new NWO-sponsored research program directed by Mattijs van de Port, Herman Roodenburg, and myself, titled Heritage Dynamics. Aesthetics of Persuasion and Politics of Authentication in Brazil, Ghana, South Africa and the Netherlands.

The brand new minister in the Lula government—flown in by helicopter just for the occasion, as I was told—reminded the audience that he too was an obá, a minister of Xangô. Accepting his new job in Brasília, he said, had been greatly facilitated by the fact that he already was a minister “at this primary, that is, the spiritual level” long before his current position as a minister of state. ” Time and again, he received a standing ovation from the audience. TV-cameras pushed forward, trying to get as close as possible to the speaker.

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