Atmospheric Spaces

Directed by Tonino Griffero

Editorial Board:

Jean-François Augoyard (CNRS – Grenoble), Arnold Berleant (Emeritus – Long Island University), Mikkel Bille (Roskilde Universitet), Gernot Böhme (Emeritus – Universitaet Darmstadt), Christian Borch (Copenhagen Business School), Gabor Csepregi (Université de Saint-Boniface – Winnipeg), Christoph Demmerling (Universität Jena), Thomas Fuchs (Universitätsklinikum – Heidelberg), Michael Großheim (Universität Rostock), Hans Ulrich Gumbrecht (Stanford University), Jürgen Hasse (Goethe Universität – Frankfurt), Timothy Ingold (University of Aberdeen), Rainer Kazig (LMU – München), David Le Breton (Université de Strasbourg), Juhani Pallasmaa (Helsinki University, Alvar Aalto Academy), Alberto Pérez-Gómez (McGill University – Montreal, Quebec), Andreas Philippopoulos-Mihalopoulos (University of Westminster – London), Hermann Schmitz (Emeritus – Universität Kiel), David Seamon (Kansas State University), Giovanni Stanghellini (Università “G. D’Annunzio” – Chieti; Universidad “Diego Portales” – Santiago), Jean-Paul Thibaud (CNRS – Grenoble).

What is an “Atmosphere”? According to an aesthetic, phenomenological and ontological view, such a notion can be understood as a sensorial and affective quality widespread in space. It is the particular tone that determines the way one experiences her surroundings. Air, ambiance, aura, climate, environment, genius loci, milieu, mood, numinous, lived space, Stimmung, but also Umwelt, ki, aida, Zwischen, in-between – all these words are names hiding, in fact, the founding idea of atmospheres: a vague ens or power, without visible and discrete boundaries, which we find around us and, resonating in our lived body, even involves us. Studying atmospheres means, thus, a parte subjecti, to analyze (above all) the range of unintentional or involuntary experiences and, in particular, those experiences which emotionally “tonalize” our everyday life. A parte objecti, it means however to learn how atmospheres are intentionally (e.g. artistically, politically, socially, etc.) produced and how we can critically evaluate them, thus avoiding being easily manipulated by such feelings. Atmospheric Spaces is a new book series whose aim is to become a point of reference for a community that works together on this philosophical and transdisciplinary subject and for all those whose research, more broadly, is involved in the so-called “affective turn” of the Social Sciences and Humanities.


Atmospheric Spaces

New Phenomenology. A brief introduction


In this work, Hermann Schmitz introduces the main theses of New Phenomenology: subjective facts and affective involvement, the felt body and the primitive present, and pre-personal selfconsciousness among others. He also offers a new solution to the problem of freedom and a critique of the current age of irony based on the critique of Western reductionism and introjectivism. Hermann Schmitz, born 1928 in Leipzig, was Professor of Philosophy in Kiel from 1971 to 1993. He is the founder of New Phenomonology and has published over 50 books concerning different topics... Read more →

Atmospheres of Learning. How they affect the development of our children


An atmosphere bears an effect wherever it is perceptible by human beings, which includes situations in educational institutions. Due to their efficacious potential, they can exude an influence that enhances or weakens, encourages or inhibits children in their development. This book explains various kinds of atmospheres that typically emerge in pedagogical contexts. It includes suggestions on how atmospheres can be actively altered in order to improve learning conditions. In this regard, pedagogues are also encouraged to develop an ‘atmospheric competence’. Barbara Wolf is Professor of Childhood Education at SRH University... Read more →

Concerning Astonishing Atmospheres. Aisthesis, Aura, and Atmospheric Portfolio


Atmospheres are omnipresent and they are frequently used in everyday language. Yet, when do we perceive atmospheres and how can we explore them? The concept of atmosphere extends aesthetics to aisthesis and conceives of perception as a relation bound to the present and with regard to others. In this context, the astonishing atmosphere is identifi ed as a watershed moment when the object of perception becomes the object of discourse. Surveying Benjamin’s defi nitions of aura, one becomes aware of two modes of perception, which are crucial for the understanding... Read more →

Atmosphere/Atmospheres. Testing a New Paradigm


What is an “Atmosphere”? As part of the book series “Atmospheric Spaces”, this volume analyses a new phenomenological and aesthetic paradigm based on the notion of the “Atmosphere”, conceived as a feeling spread out into the external space rather than as a private mood. The idea of “Atmosphere” is here explored from different perspectives and disciplines, in the context of a full valorization of the so-called “affective turn” in Humanities. Tonino Griffero is full Professor of Aesthetics at Università degli Studi di Roma “Tor Vergata”, where he teaches Aesthetics. He... Read more →

Situations and atmospheres in organizations. A (new) phenomenology of being-in-the-organization


Although situations and atmospheres are omnipresent in organizations and have a significant influence on the behaviour of the members of the organization, they are only seldom regarded as relevant research subjects in management and organization research and systematically investigated. This book enters unknown territory in that it elevates situations and atmospheres to the most fundamental and everyday features of being-in-the-organization and investigates their development dynamics systematically. The new phenomenology of the German philosopher Hermann Schmitz, and critical supplements from his follower, Guido Rappe, serve as the theoretical foundation of the... Read more →

Critique of aesthetic capitalism

Aesthetic Economy is a theory of the recent development of capitalism in our national economies. Basic needs are easily satisfied and, as a result, most commodities are no longer intended for consumption, but for the staging of our lives. That is, they are used to produce atmospheres. Applications of the theory are found wherever staging is performed: in commodity aesthetics, in marketing, as well as in the sphere of production. As to technology, we find a turn from useful to joyful technology. And the technology of entertainment has become a... Read more →

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