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It has been common in the last decade to pit some affect theories against others. One effect of this combative style of theorizing is that various affect theories have built up epistemological worlds in isolation from other ideas, data, and imaginations. This chapter follows more closely the idea that theories in tension stretch each other, that they remain in relation with each other, and that they pull each other in surprising directions. Specifically, the chapter addresses the give-and-take between Silvan Tomkins's affect theory and a number of important twentieth-century psychoanalytic thinkers. The goal is to investigate psychoanalytic scenes that are rich in theorizing subjective affective experience and that can be read in tension with Tomkins's more structuralist, American, and cybernetic theory. How might one affect theory draw from another affect theory, straining that theory, reorienting it, and reconceiving it but without definitively breaking from it?

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