Collaboration/Connection for an Affective Space of Writing and Curriculum

Publication Date


Document Type


Publication Title

Bergamo Conference on Curriculum Theory and Classroom Practice

Conference Location

Dayton, OH


Our partner work “Collaboration/Connection” stems from the desire to join forces in engaging texts that “represent” curriculum and by viewing each other’s dissertation as an affective project. Despite being anchored in posthumanist theories of affect, our dissertation work shares more heterogeneities than commonalities: our research topics (social justice vs. immigrant education), sites (the U.S. and South Korea), research “stage” (data collection vs. data analysis), as well as our interpretations and application of affect, differ. However, these differences were easily overridden by our shared stuckness around the complexities of affect, our deep anxiety around the “blockages” in our thinking, and the complete “shutdown” of our own writing. Informed by Deleuzo-Guattarian philosophical thought, our “collaborative” work is premised on their view that writing is like a rhizome. Following the principle of rhizome that enables strange links between and among “the concrete, abstract, and virtual entities and activities” (Coleman, 2005, p. 232) as well as through the logic of “AND,” we consider how affects, defined as intensities and forces, might allow for some rhizomatic “alliance,” or unthought-of connections between and among each of us (human) subjects, bodies and data, our meeting space, as well as the reading and/or writing around our posthumanistic approaches to curriculum. Our collaboration/connection is not looking to assign a meaning, or find an answer in how to deal with the affective “writing” of curriculum, but the rupture of an answer. That is, to give in to the “maelstrom of affect” (Thrift, 2002, p. 57) of writing--where affect and language meet--is to “make room for crazy thoughts to become intellectual projects and communities and movements” (Cvetkovich, 2012, p. 20). Sharing our pains, conundrums, and questions around affective writing and transforming them into driving forces allow us to imagine and approach curriculum as an affective space.