Normalization, Enjoyment and Bodies/Emotions: Argentine Sensibilities


Adrian Scribano, PhD – Principal Researcher at the National Council for Scientific and Technical Research, Buenos Aires, Argentina

Series: Social Issues, Justice and Status
BISAC: SOC002010

This book comprises a set of chapters that will enable readers to understand, at least partially, the current structure of sensibilities in Argentina. The central objective of the study is to present an account of the state of sensibilities based on several social symptoms: conflict, spectacle, enjoyment, food, and happiness, among others. The book’s explorations range from collective action and social conflict, through the examination of the structuring of a special form of neo-colonial religion, to the currently normalized society configured around immediate enjoyment through consumption. The analysis presented is founded, in a global sense, on the convergence of critical theory, critical hermeneutics and dialectical critical realism on one hand, and on the encounter between the sociology of the body/emotions, ideology criticism and studies of collective action and social conflict on the other. Using this distinctive approach, the book uncovers how the body and its sensations have become the focus of a political economy of morality as well as of a struggle between power and domination on the one hand, and the struggle for autonomy and justice on the other. (Imprint: Nova)

Table of Contents

Table of Contents

Preface: Emotions in the Days of Thana Capitalism
Maximiliano Korstanje (University of Palermo, Argentina)

Introduction: A View from the Sociology of Bodies/Emotions

Chapter 1. Social Movements, Collective Action and the Politics of Sensibilities in South America and Argentina

Chapter 2. Neo-Colonial Religion as a Current Form of the Political Economy of Morality

Chapter 3. Spectacle as a ritual of Neo-Colonial Religion

Chapter 4. Emotionalization in Argentina: Football, Spectacle and Politics

Chapter 5. Food, Light and Colors: A Look into the Structures of Experience in Buenos Aires, Argentina

Chapter 6. Evicted Argentina: A Path for the Remembrance of the Silenced Repressions

Chapter 7. Buenos Aires from the Social Sensibilities Perspective: Bodies/Colors/ Emotions

Chapter 8. Exploring Happiness in Buenos Aires

Chapter 9. Love and Collective Action: A view from the Interstitial Practices in Argentina


Since there are no studies with which to compare the proposed book implies an original and inaugural look. This book helps to learn about Latin America from a new perspective. This is the reason why it is attractive to all those interested in the region, from decision makers, going through students and educators, to the general public. The volume is aimed at all practitioners of empirical social research interested in emotions, ranging from advanced beginner students to experienced scholars and researchers.


“This is a rich exploration of the sociology of emotions in the Argentinean culture and history. Drawing from different fields of analysis and a solid theoretical background, Scribano highlights the adventures of the body/emotion connection with sensibility and perspicacity, offering new interpretations in the study of emotions.” – Paola Rebughini, University of Milan, Italy

“How does the body become the site of political power in contemporary capitalist and neo-colonial societies? How does the ideological scripting of its sensations and emotions serve to reproduce relations of domination, and how can the domain of sensibilities be reclaimed by struggles for social justice? In this book, Adrian Scribano seeks to answer such questions, using a fascinating range of case studies that span such diverse issues as food, football, and social protest. The result is a thought-provoking, original and informative book that makes a fresh contribution to our understanding of body politics in Argentina and the Global South.” – <strong>Professor Majid Yar, Lancaster University, UK

“In his book Normalization, Enjoyment and Bodies/Emotions: Argentine Sensibilities, Adrian Scribano examines the convergence of collective action, social conflict and ideological critique, while focusing in the spirit of the Durkheim, Weber, and Marx on the relativistic relationship between capitalism and religion. In an interesting and thought-provoking manner, Scribano portrays the presence or absence of emotions in the Argentinian public sphere in general and in Argentinian political spectacles in particular. In a unique and fascinating manner, Scribano deconstructs and reconstructs the links between emotions, the market and politics in Argentina. This intriguing volume constantly reminds us of the fragile nature of democracy and freedom in modern and postmodern societies.” -Dr. Mira Moshe Senior Lecturer Ariel University Israel

“Adrian Scribano’s new book addresses a significant theme for the contemporary social sciences, the debate on social movements in South America, with emphasis on Argentina. The book provides the reader with an extraordinary account of the new theoretical and methodological perspectives in the treatment of social movements and collective actions in the South American Cone in an effort to visualize the analytical changes that have occurred in the social sciences of Argentina and South America; And builds the current comprehensive scenarios on the new faces and contexts of collective movements and local protests, and the outlook and perspectives of the new analytical tendencies that seek to understand them, highlighting the analytical effort that emphasizes emotions as an important analytical axis of these new social movements and of the new social configurations from which they emerge. It is a very important book for the specialized reader, as well as for the reader interested in knowing the new scenarios of domination of neo-coloniality, and the ways of reacting to them in the present world, from an Argentinean and South American point of view.” -Mauro Guilherme Pinheiro Koury is an Associate Professor of the Postgraduate Program in Anthropology at the Federal University of Paraíba, Brazil, and coordinator of the GREM Research Group on Anthropology and Sociology of Emotions at the same university

“This is an ambitious research project that aims not only to write an epistemology of social movements in South America since the 1960s but also their relationship with our bodies and emotions. Scribano’s take on the appearance of what he calls ‘the neo-religion of helplessness’ provides a penetrating analysis of the intricacies of the new political economy of morality and its relation to the consumption world and our state of happiness. A must read for anybody working on our societal interstices, our bodies and our emotional world.” – <strong>Estela Valverde and Michael Humphrey Sydney University, Australia

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