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Apprehension smirks

  

Objective: To wake up your creative and thinking energy by defeating apprehension with funny faces!

Duration: 1 to 15 minutes

Material: 

  • Your body and mind
  • A mirror
  • Optional: a camera

Instructions: 

  1. Play the part. First, express apprehension with your face, just like a comedian trying to show fear or anxiety about something bad happening. In front of a mirror, observe every part of your facial expression: your forehead, eyebrows, eyes, nose, cheeks, mouth, chin. How does your face express apprehension?
  2. Make faces. Then turn up your expression by increasing the intensity of each part of your face, one at a time, just like a clown. When you reach maximum intensity, let it all go, then start again!
  3. Think about your experience. Once your face is fully relaxed, you can ask yourself: How is apprehension felt and expressed? Should we conceal our apprehension? Can we be too expressive?

...

Bonus: Do you still feel like making faces? This time, only use your eyebrows! Can you express apprehension with your eyebrows only? Using a device that can take pictures, capture apprehension’s eyebrows by daring the people you live with to take up the challenge as well!

This comic strip is reproduced with permission from the philosophy columns of our community partner Les Débrouillards magazine. It was produced in collaboration with our team at the Institute of Philosophy, Citizenship and Youth.

 

Tricks for tots: To find inspiration, you can imagine something that could be the source of your apprehension. First imagine that this scary thing is very small, then very big! Likewise, your fear is first very small, then very big! And your expressions can match the bigness and smallness of what you're feeling.

Tips for teens: Do you know the painting "The Scream" by artist Edvard Munch? This painting shows a person with their eyes and mouth wide open, and their hands on their cheeks. Could this be a smirk of apprehension? According to the artist, it actually symbolizes a crisis of existential angst... but can existence be a source of angst? For some existentialist philosophers, this angst is engendered when we become aware of our own freedom and of the nothingness of death—what could also be called vertigo. If you had to choose between the freedom to make your own choices or the obligation to follow a predetermined path, which would you prefer? Is it better to live feeling free and anguished... or constrained and serene? Why?

Share your creative reflections by sending them via email.
Include photos of your projects and notes of your thoughts, as well as your first name and your age!