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“Digressions: A cross-disciplinary study of the indirectness of the human imagination” explores the indirect and nonlinear modalities of social life. We wish to test two key hypotheses:

  1. Social life involves ways of being and acting that are indirect and non-linear; life proceeds not along straight lines but by virtue of diversions; events occur by causal routes that are more tangential than direct.
  2. It is through such diversions, indirectness and tangents, nevertheless, that social life maintains the appearance of being a linear phenomenon so that B appears to be following A ‘logically’.

You are all invited to participate in this exploration of digression. Throughout the coming years, we hope to create a vibrant collective where we share thoughts and ideas, develop new collaborative methodologies, formulate research projects - and truly digress along the way!


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2017.04.27 |

Mushrooming and Mind-wandering in Russian Literature

Fourth blog post by Birgitte Beck Pristed.

2016.12.09 |

Life-Affirming: The Digressive Practice of Art Appreciation​

Third blog post by Nigel Rapport. My project, entitled ‘Life-Affirming: The Digressive Practice of Art Appreciation’ treats digression less as the entering of a different situation to the everyday, or as an escape from the everyday, than as intrinsic to how human beings function in the everyday.

2016.12.01 |

Old topic: Standup Comedy in Theory

Second blog post by John Limon. I am interested in what Marianna says about digression in standup in terms of the general society surrounding the standup event and in terms of its specific audience. How can the fields of anthropology and standup be aligned or at least compared according to those two contexts?

2016.12.01 |

The Anthropology of Comedy: Digression Doubled

First blog post by Marianna Keisalo. The idea of this joint blog is to provide a space to work through and comment on ideas regarding digressions. Some of these posts might be developed into longer publications, others may remain as digressions. In this post, I will discuss some ways I see digressions in anthropology and comedy.