This essay will address the place of language and affect in the public sphere through discussion of my collaboration with Berlin-based artist Karin Michalski on the video/installation, The Alpahbet of Feeling Bad (2012), an abecediary of political feelings that has been exhibited in Berlin, Karlsruhe (Badischer Kunstverein), and Sweden (Umea and Goteborg), as well as being distributed in print and audio media. The project aims to create affective and sensory, rather than rational publics, by making space within the public sphere for a range of feelings, including negative ones, often confined to private and intimate experience. The essay also discusses how The Alphabet of Feeling Bad’s expanded vocabulary of affect has served as a point of departure for writing workshops and salons that provide public forums for collective experiences of “feeling bad”.