Cardiff University | Prifysgol Caerdydd ORCA
Online Research @ Cardiff 
WelshClear Cookie - decide language by browser settings

BJJ's diary: The emergence of a new normal

Bowman, Paul ORCID: 2023. BJJ's diary: The emergence of a new normal. Capacious: Journal for Emerging Affect Inquiry 3 (1) , pp. 90-98.

[thumbnail of Bowman BJJs Diary Published.pdf]
PDF - Published Version
Available under License Creative Commons Attribution.

Download (792kB) | Preview


In December 2019, during a period of intense family problems, I took up Brazilian jiu-jitsu (BJJ). Upon starting BJJ, I immediately felt that something profound and transformative was happening to me, and in an effort to capture the sensations, feelings and thoughts elicited by the new experiences – before their newness receded, and BJJ practice just became a ‘new normal’ – I started keeping a diary. This article is a reflection on this moment, or process. I read the diary, drawing on different aspects of affect theory, derived from authors such as Deleuze and Guattari, Raymond Williams, Lauren Berlant, Brian Massumi, and (perhaps surprisingly), Peter Sloterdijk. In drawing my own experience into a relationship with larger historical, cultural and maybe even ideological processes, I also draw upon aspects of the ideology theory of Slavoj Žižek. Using Berlant in particular, and the other theorists to a lesser extent, the work attempts to connect my ‘individual’ case to the broader landscape of a constantly undulating and modulating, emerging and vanishing present. The article seeks to reflect on the emergence of a new normal, by drawing an individual case into dialogue with affect theory, and suggesting how affect theory can enter into dialogue with such cultural theorists as Peter Sloterdijk and Slavoj Žižek.

Item Type: Article
Date Type: Publication
Status: Published
Schools: Journalism, Media and Culture
Publisher: Open Humanities Press
ISSN: 2816-9913
Date of First Compliant Deposit: 14 March 2023
Date of Acceptance: 10 March 2023
Last Modified: 29 Jul 2023 04:41

Actions (repository staff only)

Edit Item Edit Item


Downloads per month over past year

View more statistics