Affect and public health – Choreographing atmospheres of movement and participation

Andrew Barnfield*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle (Academic Journal)peer-review

16 Citations (Scopus)


Attempts at improving physical activity rates among the population are central to many government, public health, and third sector approaches to encouraging health behaviours. However, to date there has been little attempt by public health to embrace different theoretical-methodological approaches, relying instead upon largely quantitative techniques. This paper argues that through a development of a framework of affect amplification, public health approaches to physical activity should incorporate the choreographing of spaces of movement. Drawing on two case studies, both incorporating ethnographic methodologies, this paper complicates the idea that public health can rely on individual or population level approaches that overlook affective and spatial entanglements. This paper concludes by outlining offer a series of ideas to encourage physical activity participation.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-9
Number of pages9
JournalEmotion, Space and Society
Early online date18 May 2016
Publication statusPublished - 1 Aug 2016

Structured keywords

  • SPS Centre for Urban and Public Policy Research


  • affect
  • choreography
  • movement
  • physical activity
  • public health
  • space


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