Developing Ambient Attention

Michael Marcinkowski

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter in a book


Through an analysis of audience data and readings of Kate Pullinger's Breathe and Duncan Speakman's It Must Have Been Dark by Then, this chapter presents a critical consideration of the concept of attention. Interrogating a classical conception of attention through readings of William James, Jonathan Crary, Malcolm McCullough, and Charles Bernstein, a multi-dimensional consideration of attention is developed. Rather than understanding it as a purely psychological state, attention comes to be considered as relying on a complex assemblage of social practices, historical traditions, and cultural norms which serve to direct a reader both into and out of the frame of the work. In this, attention in works of ambient literature begins to be developed as the hermeneutic movement between focus and distraction.
Original languageUndefined/Unknown
Title of host publicationAmbient Literature: Towards a New Poetics of Situated Writing and Reading Practices
EditorsTom Abba, Jonathan Dovey, Kate Pullinger
Place of PublicationCham
PublisherSpringer International Publishing AG
Number of pages26
Publication statusPublished - 2021

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