About Us

The Affect and Emotions Workshop is an interdisciplinary community of scholars at all stages of their career at the University of Chicago. The workshop was founded in 2019 to foster conversation among researchers in the humanities and social sciences whose work focuses on the phenomenon of emotional life.

We feature work by doctoral students, faculty, and postdoctoral fellows from across the University, as well as a few guest speakers per year. Our aim is to offer an informal but committed environment for exploring the diverse questions that drive research on the emotions in multiple fields of knowledge production: What are affects and emotions? Have we always felt the same? How do cultural discourses shape our understanding of the emotions, and how do feelings make a nation? Are emotions rational? What does it mean to be happy?

Our Meetings

The Affect and Emotions Workshop meets on alternate Mondays between 4:30 and 6pm, unless otherwise noted. You can find our schedule here. Materials for each session are available on the website with a password and distributed to our mailing list one week before the session. Light refreshments are served.

The workshop is open to the public, and we are committed to making our sessions accessible to all persons. If you have any questions or concerns, please email us.

Presenting Your Work at the Workshop

The workshop primarily discusses work in progress, and we welcome proposals for article drafts, dissertation chapters, and conference presentations. Our general call for submissions goes out in July, and applicants can expect to hear back from us by September 1st before the beginning of Fall Quarter. Nevertheless, if you have work in progress that you would like to present for discussion and feedback at a different time of the year, please let us know. Workshop schedules are sometimes flexible, and we might be able to accommodate you.

Keeping in Touch

You can sign up for updates on our news and events here. Any questions, concerns or inquiries may be directed to the coordinators by email.


Jane Gordon, Near Eastern Languages and Civilizations  // Coordinator
Alex Jania, History // Coordinator

Emily Austin, Assistant Professor of Classics and the College // Faculty Sponsor
Lawrence Zbikowski, Professor of Music and the Humanities in the College // Faculty Sponsor

Past Coordinators: Michal Zechariah