RMES Summer School 2022: Communities of Feeling

When? 16, 17 & 20 June 2022*
  University of Amsterdam
Organizers? Prof. Misha Kavka, Prof. Patricia Pisters, and Dr. Maryn Wilkinson
For? PhD Candidates and Research master students who are a member of a Dutch Graduate Research School (onderzoekschool). Students who are members of RMeS will have first access.
ECTS? 2 ECTS (for participation and attendance) / 5 ECTS (for participation, attendance and writing a 3500 word paper, see details below)
Registration: Register before June 1, 2022.
When registering, please specify if you intend to obtain 2 or 5 EC.

In 2010, Anna Gibbs presciently wrote that ‘[c]ontagion is everywhere in the contemporary world. It leaps from body to body, sweeping through mediatized populations at the speed of a bushfire’ (‘After Affect’, The Affect Theory Reader). Although to our COVID-sensitized ears this sounds alarming, Gibbs was in fact laying the groundwork for a productive notion of ‘affect contagion’ that enables as well as mediates our sense of belonging, whether to familial, social, cultural or political networks. For Gibbs it is feelings, as they leap from body to body across mediated channels, that thread together communities out of shared attachments, dynamics and resonances. Today, as we feel our way into the ‘new normal’ of a contagion-conscious world where we are increasingly bound to each other through media technologies, it is time to reclaim the productive contagiousness of feelings and rethink how community-building is affected by the way our connections flow through and across media. 

To this end, the 2022 RmeS Summer School will address the topic of ‘Communities of Feeling’ from both a theoretical and methodological perspective, and ask us to consider how we use a range of screen, social and digital media to establish, manage and maintain our communities. Over two days of lectures and workshops, students will be introduced to skills, methods and concepts that will help them analyse mediated communities from the perspective of feelings, with particular attention paid to the way that media engagement foments belonging, and community belonging in turn takes creative, cultural and political forms. 

Confirmed speakers for lectures and workshops (more to be added):

  • Anna Gibbs, Western Sydney University
  • Eugenie Brinkema, Massachusetts Institute of Technology
  • Amy Holdsworth, University of Glasgow
  • Tony Sampson, East London University
  • Tarja Laine, University of Amsterdam
  • Misha Kavka, University of Amsterdam

Organising team at the Department of Media Studies, University of Amsterdam: Prof. Misha Kavka, Prof. Patricia Pisters, and Dr. Maryn Wilkinson.


Programme will be announced soon.

Information for RMA students

Research master students who are participating in the RMeS summer school have the option to

1. actively participate in the two-day programme with workshops and lectures (see programme for more information). If the students fulfil all requirements, they will receive a certificate for 2 EC upon request.
2. In addition to participating in the workshops and lectures on all three days, they can extend the credits to 5 EC by taking the Monday afternoon workshop on June 20th by Maryn Wilkinson, and by pitching and then writing a full paper of 3,500 words.

Workshop on Monday 20 June, Location TBA

To participate in the workshop, we require that you have read closely the four required readings listed below (TBA). During the workshop, we will discuss the main arguments put forward in these articles and outline various points for further research. During the second part of the workshop you will present the prospective line of argument for your proposed paper. The instructors will then provide feedback on your proposal, including further tips for your research, some writing guidelines, and comments on the finishing requirements.

Required readings to prepare for the workshop:


Students who will not be writing a paper are not required to attend this session, but if they are interested in sitting in on the workshop, they’re more than welcome to attend and participate in the discussion.

Paper requirements

In order to receive the additional credits, the RMa student is expected to write a discussion paper focusing on a specific question within the theme of “Communities of Feeling” OR a critical review of the literature on this topic. The paper may serve as preparation for the MA thesis or be related to another project for the degree, but it must be an original piece of writing that clearly builds on the knowledge gained from the summer school.
The paper should be 3,500 words in length (with a margin of 10%, excluding footnotes and bibliography). The final and only deadline for the paper is July 4th , 15.00 o’clock. Please send the paper in pdf by e-mail to: RMeS@rug.nl Please note, there will not be a possibility for a retake or extension on this assignment! If you miss the deadline, the credits will not be attained.

Certificates for PhD candidates

PhD candidates who participate in the two day summer school programme receive a certificate for 2 ECTS.

* The RMeS Summer School is on 16 & 17 June 2022 (ONSITE only, COVID-permitted). Students who intend to write a paper, will have to give a pitch presentation on June 20, 13.00-16.00 (most likely ONLINE).