Creating Affective Social Design

An Ethical and Ontological Discussion






Affect, Deleuze, Ethics, Social Design, Spinoza


The ethics of designing has often been organised according to moral imperatives, and social design not only aligns with such moralities, but perpetuates them without providing a clear critique of the systems to which they adhere. To rid itself of such reactive ideologies, and so to create other conditions for the possibility of its creativity, social design might occupy itself with a different account of ethics altogether. This paper will seek to elucidate such a different ethics along the lines Baruch Spinoza proposed and Gilles Deleuze championed. That is, it will therefore call for an affective designing that operates by creating ethical ontologies. This article will bring an affective, ethical, ontological design to bear on a social entity that emerges from the relations affectivity requires, insofar as it is one that is designed.

How to Cite

Brassett, J. (2018). Creating Affective Social Design: An Ethical and Ontological Discussion. Cubic Journal, 1(1), 172–185.



Author Biography

Jamie Brassett, University of the Arts London

Dr Jamie Brassett is Reader in Philosophy, Design and Innovation and Course Leader of MA Innovation Management at Central Saint Martins, University of the Arts London, where he’s worked since 1995. He is also a Visiting Professor in the Department of Design, at Anhalt University of the Applied Arts, Dessau, Germany. He is co-editing (with Richard Reynolds) Superheroes and Excess: a philosophical inquiry (Routledge), and is working on journal articles crossing ethics, social and political ontologies, futures, design and innovation. Deleuze and Design (co-edited with Betti Marenko) was published in 2015 (Edinburgh University Press). Jamie consults in innovation, strategy and design research, and is currently Principal Consultant for Studio INTO, a Design, Research and Innovation agency. Jamie is a member of the British Academy of Management, and holds Fellowships from the Royal Society of Arts and the Higher Education Academy.


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