Attention

Attention is a necessary capacity of our mind; we need it in our everyday life to focus on certain things and withdraw from others in order to effectively navigate our environment. However, as studies have shown, we seem less and less able to concentrate on something and not to get distracted. On average a person checks 74 times a day her email, and each time she checks it, she spends about 32 seconds on average. Especially in western societies attention has become an indispensable currency. Various socio-psychological phenomena such as the rise of Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) and Burn-Outs or the influence of social media networks such as Instagram or Facebook are just some examples of a general feature of today’s accelerated and condensed life. „Cultures of attention“, situated at the University of Fribourg, investigates the topic from various perspectives. The leading project behind that is the SNSF-PRIMA-Project Aesthetics and Ethics of Attention, with Susanne Schmetkamp (PI) and her team. The project collaborates among others with the Chair of Aesthetics and Philosophy of Art of the University of Fribourg and the research workshop Aesthetics and Critique.