Inhaltspezifische Aktionen

Dominique Autschbach

Dominique Autschbach

Project title

  • Relaxation and serenity: A praxeological account of self-help literature and courses on stress.
  • Entspannung und Gelassenheit: Eine praxeologische Analyse von Ratgeberliteratur und Präventionskursen zu Stress.

Stress is a ubiquitous term of contemporary society: It allows individuals to both articulate everyday grievances and give a critical account of societal circumstances. Furthermore, talking about stress displays certain ways of understanding the self and its relationship with the environment as well as techniques for achieving affirmed states such as relaxation and serenity. Using the term stress brings about more or less systematic classifications of events: Some episodes are stress, others are not, some stresses cause harm for the entity subjected to them, others make it flourish. Departing from literature on the history of stress research, the project thus proposes an Wittgensteinian sociology of everyday knowledge about what it means to be stressed and how to deal with stress. Methodologically, the study draws on two forms of qualitative research: The data collection combines a participant observation in training classes on stress prevention with a textual analysis of self-help books on stress management.


Publications (Book reviews):

Bröckling, Ulrich: Gute Hirten führen sanft. Über Menschenregierungskünste. Berlin: Suhrkamp, 2017. In: KULT_Online 53 (2018),

Pribram, E. Deirdre: A Cultural Approach to Emotional Disorders: Psychological and Aesthetic Interpretations. New York / London: Taylor & Francis, 2016. In: KULT_online 50 (2017),

Mixa, Elisabeth; Pritz, Sarah Miriam; Tumeltshammer, Markus und Greco, Monica: Un-Wohl-Gefühle. Eine Kulturanalyse gegenwärtiger Befindlichkeiten. Bielefeld: transcript, 2016. In: KULT_online 49 (2017),  

Jackson, Mark (Hrsg.): Stress in Post-War Britain 1945–1985. London 2015, in: H-Soz-Kult, 13.09.2016,