Spaces of boredom : imagination and the ambivalence of limits
This study aims to contribute readings of arguments pertaining to and conceptualizations of the experience of boredom to discussions of art, philosophy and culture. Relevant histories and readings of philosophical accounts of boredom are considered in order to enable an understanding of boredom as generative of distinctive understandings of space. This is further developed as an account of boredom as problematic in the reception and creation of literary and visual art. Beginning from critical discussions of boredom in recent cultural and critical commentary, in particular discussions of the everyday, this thesis considers the phenomenological analysis of the everyday that is at work in Martin Heidegger’s account of boredom and in rewritings of this analysis, as the experience of the impersonal, in texts by Maurice Blanchot and Emmanuel Levinas. Boredom is shown to provoke an ambivalence that can nevertheless unfold, or produce, spaces of thought, art and the everyday through the experience of the impersonal. The limits of these spaces of boredom invite us to certain passages through experiences of ambivalence where thought, art and the everyday are opened up, by means of an imagination of boredom, to new possibilities.