Geography Reference
In-Depth Information
In the next section, we propose an analytic concept that can assist in studying how
people link affect, thought, and place in the conduct of their ordinary lives. The notion
of “the vibe” is a commonsense concept that people use to account for their participa-
tion (or not) in concrete situations. It bridges the individual and the social situation both
because it connects thought and affect and because it elucidates how we “experience”
everyday places. By advancing this concept of the vibe, we seek to move beyond the
analytics of belonging that has been of central concern in the place identity literature
tion nexus. We seek to move toward an analytics of participation that focuses squarely
on the enactment of the practices/performances that constitute social life and that bring
assemblages of affect into being.
The Vibe
The Oxford Dictionary defines a vibe as “A person's emotional state or the atmosphere
of a place as communicated to and felt by others.” The concept entered the English lan-
guage in the late 1960s as a shortening of the word vibration which was used colloqui-
ally in American popular culture to mean an instinctive reception of feelings. Today it
is in common use in everyday discourse, especially in relation to clubs, where it has at-
tracted academic attention. For example, Sommer (2001, cited in St. John 2006) defines
the vibe within underground house clubs as:
An active communal force, a feeling, a rhythm that is created by the mix of
dancers, the balance of music, the effects of darkness and light, the energy.
Everything interlocks to produce a powerful sense of liberation. The vibe is
an active, exhilarating feeling of “now-ness” that everything is coming togeth-
rhythm, the groove that carries the party psychically and physically. (11)
In the dictionary and academic definitions, it is possible to discern how the concept
tries to capture the idea that affect is mobile, in flux, phenomenologically potent, and
connects people to others and to places.
Severalcommentators havesuggestedthattheterm vibe isinterchangeable withVict-
or Turner's notion of “communitas.” St. John (2009) suggests that Turner's concept has
become a common lens within studies of electronic dance music culture. According to
Turner (1982, cited in St John 2009) spontaneous communitas may be described as a
situation in which:
Search WWH ::

Custom Search