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Atmosphere and intersubjectivity: lessons from photography

Maya Gratier


From birth, human beings partake in the vast circulations of air that compose atmosphere. Air cycles across life forms. It rhythmically enters and exits the bodies of animals with every breath. Every living being is connected to other living beings through air. Humans must indeed recognize their vital debt to plant life which is the source of all breathable air (Coccia, 2016). The rhythms of breathing are connected to terrain, effort, emotion and sociality. Air, mind and atmosphere appear to be etymologically intertwined. In Sanskrit Atman means ‘vital breath’ as well as ‘soul’. In Greek Atmos means ‘vapour’ and Psyche means ‘breath’ and ‘soul’. Spiritus in Latin means ‘wind’ and Anima designates both ‘breath’ and ‘soul’. Could atmospheres be involved in the very constitution of the human mind? In this paper I wish to explore the connection between intersubjectivity, atmosphere and human development. I take as point of departure a few photographs that portray people intensively involved in a moment of sharing within real-world happenings.
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hal-03817617 , version 1 (17-10-2022)


  • HAL Id : hal-03817617 , version 1


Maya Gratier. Atmosphere and intersubjectivity: lessons from photography. A festishrift for Colwyn Trevarthen, inPress. ⟨hal-03817617⟩
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