front cover of The Affect Effect
The Affect Effect
Dynamics of Emotion in Political Thinking and Behavior
Edited by W. Russell Neuman, George E. Marcus, Michael MacKuen, and Ann N. Crigler
University of Chicago Press, 2007
Passion and emotion run deep in politics, but researchers have only recently begun to study how they influence our political thinking. Contending that the long-standing neglect of such feelings has left unfortunate gaps in our understanding of political behavior, The Affect Effect fills the void by providing a comprehensive overview of current research on emotion in politics and where it is likely to lead.

In sixteen seamlessly integrated essays, thirty top scholars approach this topic from a broad array of angles that address four major themes. The first section outlines the philosophical and neuroscientific foundations of emotion in politics, while the second focuses on how emotions function within and among individuals. The final two sections branch out to explore how politics work at the societal level and suggest the next steps in modeling, research, and political activity itself. Opening up new paths of inquiry in an exciting new field, this volume will appeal not only to scholars of American politics and political behavior, but also to anyone interested in political psychology and sociology.
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The Affect Lab
The History and Limits of Measuring Emotion
Grant Bollmer
University of Minnesota Press, 2023

Examines how our understanding of emotion is shaped by the devices we use to measure it

 

Since the late nineteenth century, psychologists have used technological forms of media to measure and analyze emotion. In The Affect Lab, Grant Bollmer examines the use of measurement tools such as electrical shocks, photography, video, and the electroencephalograph to argue that research on emotions has confused the physiology of emotion with the tools that define its inscription. 

 

Bollmer shows that the psychological definitions of emotion have long been directly shaped by the physical qualities of the devices used in laboratory research. To investigate these devices, The Affect Lab examines four technologies related to the history of psychology in North America: spiritualist toys at Harvard University, serial photography in early American psychological laboratories, experiments on “psychopaths” performed with an instrument called an Offner Dynograph, and the development of the “electropsychometer,” or “E-Meter,” by Volney Mathison and L. Ron Hubbard. 

 

Challenging the large body of humanities research surrounding affect theory, The Affect Lab identifies an understudied problem in formulations of affect: how affect is a construction inseparable from the techniques and devices used to identify and measure it. Ultimately, Bollmer offers a new critique of affect and affect theory, demonstrating how deferrals to psychology and neuroscience in contemporary theory and philosophy neglect the material of experimental, scientific research.

 

 

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Affective Trajectories
Religion and Emotion in African Cityscapes
Hansjörg Dilger, Astrid Bochow, Marian Burchardt, and Matthew Wilhelm-Solomon, editors
Duke University Press, 2019
The contributors to Affective Trajectories examine the mutual and highly complex entwinements between religion and affect in urban Africa in the early twenty-first century. Drawing on ethnographic research throughout the continent and in African diasporic communities abroad, they trace the myriad ways religious ideas, practices, and materialities interact with affect to configure life in urban spaces. Whether examining the affective force of the built urban environment or how religious practices contribute to new forms of attachment, identification, and place-making, they illustrate the force of affect as it is shaped by temporality and spatiality in the religious lives of individuals and communities. Among other topics, they explore Masowe Apostolic Christianity in relation to experiences of displacement in Harare, Zimbabwe; Muslim identity, belonging, and the global ummah in Ghana; crime, emotions, and conversion to neo-Pentecostalism in Cape Town; and spiritual cleansing in a Congolese branch of a Japanese religious movement. In so doing, the contributors demonstrate how the social and material living conditions of African cities generate diverse affective forms of religious experiences in ways that foster both localized and transnational paths of emotional knowledge.

Contributors. Astrid Bochow, Marian Burchardt, Rafael Cazarin, Hansjörg Dilger, Alessandro Gusman, Murtala Ibrahim, Peter Lambertz, Isabelle L. Lange, Isabel Mukonyora, Benedikt Pontzen, Hanspeter Reihling, Matthew Wilhelm-Solomon
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The Affective Turn
Theorizing the Social
Patricia Ticineto Clough, ed.
Duke University Press, 2007
“The innovative essays in this volume . . . demonstrat[e] the potential of the perspective of the affects in a wide range of fields and with a variety of methodological approaches. Some of the essays . . . use fieldwork to investigate the functions of affects—among organized sex workers, health care workers, and in the modeling industry. Others employ the discourses of microbiology, thermodynamics, information sciences, and cinema studies to rethink the body and the affects in terms of technology. Still others explore the affects of trauma in the context of immigration and war. And throughout all the essays run serious theoretical reflections on the powers of the affects and the political possibilities they pose for research and practice.”—Michael Hardt, from the foreword

In the mid-1990s, scholars turned their attention toward the ways that ongoing political, economic, and cultural transformations were changing the realm of the social, specifically that aspect of it described by the notion of affect: pre-individual bodily forces, linked to autonomic responses, which augment or diminish a body’s capacity to act or engage with others. This “affective turn” and the new configurations of bodies, technology, and matter that it reveals, is the subject of this collection of essays. Scholars based in sociology, cultural studies, science studies, and women’s studies illuminate the movement in thought from a psychoanalytically informed criticism of subject identity, representation, and trauma to an engagement with information and affect; from a privileging of the organic body to an exploration of nonorganic life; and from the presumption of equilibrium-seeking closed systems to an engagement with the complexity of open systems under far-from-equilibrium conditions. Taken together, these essays suggest that attending to the affective turn is necessary to theorizing the social.

Contributors. Jamie “Skye” Bianco, Grace M. Cho, Patricia Ticineto Clough, Melissa Ditmore, Ariel Ducey, Deborah Gambs, Karen Wendy Gilbert, Greg Goldberg, Jean Halley, Hosu Kim, David Staples, Craig Willse , Elizabeth Wissinger , Jonathan R. Wynn

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Alone in America
The Stories That Matter
Robert A. Ferguson
Harvard University Press, 2013

Robert A. Ferguson investigates the nature of loneliness in American fiction, from its mythological beginnings in Rip Van Winkle to the postmodern terrors of 9/11. At issue is the dark side of a trumpeted American individualism. The theme is a vital one because a greater percentage of people live alone today than at any other time in U.S. history.

The many isolated characters in American fiction, Ferguson says, appeal to us through inward claims of identity when pitted against the social priorities of a consensual culture. They indicate how we might talk to ourselves when the same pressures come our way. In fiction, more visibly than in life, defining moments turn on the clarity of an inner conversation.

Alone in America tests the inner conversations that work and sometimes fail. It examines the typical elements and moments that force us toward a solitary state—failure, betrayal, change, defeat, breakdown, fear, difference, age, and loss—in their ascending power over us. It underlines the evolving answers that famous figures in literature have given in response. Figures like Mark Twain’s Huck Finn and Toni Morrison’s Sethe and Paul D., or Louisa May Alcott’s Jo March and Marilynne Robinson’s John Ames, carve out their own possibilities against ruthless situations that hold them in place. Instead of trusting to often superficial social remedies, or taking thin sustenance from the philosophy of self-reliance, Ferguson says we can learn from our fiction how to live alone.

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The Anatomy of Prejudices
Elisabeth Young-Bruehl
Harvard University Press, 1996
In this deeply thoughtful book, Elisabeth Young-Bruehl turns a critical lens on prejudice. Surveying the study of prejudice since World War II, Young-Bruehl suggests an approach that distinguishes between different types of prejudices, the people who hold them, the social and political settings that promote them, and the human needs they fulfill. Startling, challenging, and courageous, this work offers an unprecedented analysis of prejudice.
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Aquinas on the Emotions
A Religious-Ethical Inquiry
Diana Fritz Cates
Georgetown University Press, 2009

All of us want to be happy and live well. Sometimes intense emotions affect our happiness—and, in turn, our moral lives. Our emotions can have a significant impact on our perceptions of reality, the choices we make, and the ways in which we interact with others. Can we, as moral agents, have an effect on our emotions? Do we have any choice when it comes to our emotions?

In Aquinas on the Emotions, Diana Fritz Cates shows how emotions are composed as embodied mental states. She identifies various factors, including religious beliefs, intuitions, images, and questions that can affect the formation and the course of a person's emotions. She attends to the appetitive as well as the cognitive dimension of emotion, both of which Aquinas interprets with flexibility. The result is a powerful study of Aquinas that is also a resource for readers who want to understand and cultivate the emotional dimension of their lives.

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The Ascent of Affect
Genealogy and Critique
Ruth Leys
University of Chicago Press, 2017
In recent years, emotions have become a major, vibrant topic of research not merely in the biological and psychological sciences but throughout a wide swath of the humanities and social sciences as well. Yet, surprisingly, there is still no consensus on their basic nature or workings.
 
Ruth Leys’s brilliant, much anticipated history, therefore, is a story of controversy and disagreement. The Ascent of Affect focuses on the post–World War II period, when interest in emotions as an object of study began to revive. Leys analyzes the ongoing debate over how to understand emotions, paying particular attention to the continual conflict between camps that argue for the intentionality or meaning of emotions but have trouble explaining their presence in non-human animals and those that argue for the universality of emotions but struggle when the question turns to meaning. Addressing the work of key figures from across the spectrum, considering the potentially misleading appeal of neuroscience for those working in the humanities, and bringing her story fully up to date by taking in the latest debates, Leys presents here the most thorough analysis available of how we have tried to think about how we feel.
 
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Behind the Mask
Destruction and Creativity in Women’s Aggression
Dana Crowley Jack
Harvard University Press, 1999

This boldly original book explores the origins, meanings, and forms of women's aggression. Drawing from in-depth interviews with sixty women of different ages and ethnic and class backgrounds--police officers, attorneys, substance abusers, homemakers, artists--Dana Jack provides a rich account of how women explain (or explain away) their own hidden or actual acts of hurt to others. With sensitivity but without sentimentality, Jack gives readers a range of compelling stories of how women channel, either positively or destructively, their own powerful force and of how they resist and retaliate in the face of others' aggression in a society that expects women to be yielding, empathetic, and supportive.

Arguing that aggression arises from failures in relationships, Jack portrays the many forms that women's aggression can take, from veiled approaches used to resist, control, and take vengeance on others, to aggression that reflects despair, to aggression that may be a hopeful sign of new strength. Throughout the book, Jack shows the positive sides of aggression as women struggle with internal and external demons, reconnect with others, and create the courage to stand their ground. This work broadens our understanding of aggression as an interpersonal phenomenon rooted in societal expectations, and offers exciting new approaches for exploring the variations of this vexing human experience.

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Blush
Faces of Shame
Elspeth Probyn
University of Minnesota Press, 2005
With the rise of pride - national pride, gay pride, black pride, fat pride - shame, the "sickness of the soul," has acquired a bad reputation. While the repudiation of some forms and consequences of societal shame are undoubtedly necessary, Elspeth Probyn contends that this emotion is a powerful resource in rethinking who we are and who we want to be. When we blush, we are driven to question what we value about ourselves and why. Blush argues that we are all born with a capacity for shame, much as we are born with the capacity for anger or pride, and that shame, like these other emotions, can be good for us and reveal the good in us. Painfully introspective, shame demands that we question our actions and our relationship to others. Shame's physical manifestation - the blush - gives us away, connecting us to our humanity. What shames us says a great deal about our character as individuals and as a society, about our past and our desires for the future. Written in an engaging and personal style, Blush combines psychology and cultural criticism, sociology and popular science, to present a unique perspective on debates about the ethics and emotion of identity.
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Bored, Lonely, Angry, Stupid
Changing Feelings about Technology, from the Telegraph to Twitter
Luke Fernandez and Susan J. Matt
Harvard University Press, 2020

An Entrepreneur Best Book of the Year

Facebook makes us lonely. Selfies breed narcissism. On Twitter, hostility reigns. Pundits and psychologists warn that digital technologies substantially alter our emotional states, but in this lively investigation of changing feelings about technology, we learn that the gadgets we use don’t just affect how we feel—they can profoundly change our sense of self. When we say we’re bored, we don’t mean the same thing as a Victorian dandy. Could it be that political punditry has helped shape a new kind of anger? Luke Fernandez and Susan Matt take us back in time to consider how our feelings of loneliness, boredom, vanity, and anger have evolved in tandem with new technologies.

“Technologies have been shaping [our] emotional culture for more than a century, argue computer scientist Luke Fernandez and historian Susan Matt in this original study. Marshalling archival sources and interviews, they trace how norms (say, around loneliness) have shifted with technological change.”
Nature

“A powerful story of how new forms of technology are continually integrated into the human experience.”
Publishers Weekly

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Bullying
The Social Destruction of Self
Laura Martocci
Temple University Press, 2015
In her forceful social history, Bullying, Laura Martocci explores the “bully culture” that has claimed national attention since the late 1990s. 
 
Moving beyond the identification of aggressive behaviors to an analysis of how and why we have arrived at a culture that thrives on humiliation, she critiques the social forces that gave rise to, and help maintain, bullying. Martocci’s analysis of gossip, laughter, stereotyping, and competition—dynamics that foment bullying and prompt responses of shame, violence, and depression—is positioned within a larger social narrative: the means by which we negotiate damaged social bonds and the role that bystanders play in the possibility of atonement, forgiveness, and redemption.  
 
Martocci’s fresh perspective on bullying positions shame as pivotal. She urges us to acknowledge the pain and confusion caused by social disgrace; to understand its social, psychological, and neurological nature; and to address it through narratives of loss, grief, and redemption—cultural supports that are already in place. 
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Cicero on the Emotions
Tusculan Disputations 3 and 4
Marcus Tullius Cicero
University of Chicago Press, 2002
The third and fourth books of Cicero's Tusculan Disputations deal with the nature and management of human emotion: first grief, then the emotions in general. In lively and accessible style, Cicero presents the insights of Greek philosophers on the subject, reporting the views of Epicureans and Peripatetics and giving a detailed account of the Stoic position, which he himself favors for its close reasoning and moral earnestness. Both the specialist and the general reader will be fascinated by the Stoics' analysis of the causes of grief, their classification of emotions by genus and species, their lists of oddly named character flaws, and by the philosophical debate that develops over the utility of anger in politics and war.

Margaret Graver's elegant and idiomatic translation makes Cicero's work accessible not just to classicists but to anyone interested in ancient philosophy and psychotherapy or in the philosophy of emotion. The accompanying commentary explains the philosophical concepts discussed in the text and supplies many helpful parallels from Greek sources.
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The Culture of Conformism
Understanding Social Consent
Patrick Colm Hogan
Duke University Press, 2001
“[Hogan’s] goal is not merely to explain but to provide tools of understanding that will be of practical value to those who struggle for justice and freedom. Drawing from an impressive array of sources, his valuable study advances both ends considerably, no mean accomplishment.”—Noam Chomsky

In this wide-ranging and informative work, Patrick Colm Hogan draws on cognitive science, psychoanalysis, and social psychology to explore the cultural and psychological components of social consent. Focusing in particular on Americans’ acquiescence to a system that underpays and underrepresents the vast majority of the population, Hogan moves beyond typical studies of this phenomenon by stressing more than its political and economic dimensions.
With new insights into particularly insideous forms of consent such as those manifest in racism, sexism, and homophobia, The Culture of Conformism considers the role of emotion as it works in conjunction with belief and with the formation of group identity. Arguing that coercion is far more pervasive in democratic societies than is commonly recognized, Hogan discusses the subtle ways in which economic and social pressures operate to complement the more obviously violent forces of the police and military. Addressing issues of narcissism, self-esteem, and empathy, he also explains the concept of “rational” conformity—that is, the degree to which our social consent is based on self-interest—and explores the cognitive factors that produce and sustain social ideology.
Social activists, economic theorists, social psychologists, and political scientists will be intrigued and informed by this book.

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The Culture of Sensibility
Sex and Society in Eighteenth-Century Britain
G. J. Barker-Benfield
University of Chicago Press, 1992
G. J. Barker-Benfield documents the emergence of the culture of sensibility that transformed British society of the eighteenth century. His account focuses on the rise of new moral and spiritual values and the struggle to redefine the group identities of men and women. Drawing on the full spectrum of eighteenth-century thought from Adam Smith to John Locke, from the Earl of Shaftesberry to Dr. George Cheyne, and especially Mary Wollstonecraft, Barker-Benfield offers an innovative and compelling way to understand how Britain entered the modern age.
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Depression
A Public Feeling
Ann Cvetkovich
Duke University Press, 2012
In Depression: A Public Feeling, Ann Cvetkovich combines memoir and critical essay in search of ways of writing about depression as a cultural and political phenomenon that offer alternatives to medical models. She describes her own experience of the professional pressures, creative anxiety, and political hopelessness that led to intellectual blockage while she was finishing her dissertation and writing her first book. Building on the insights of the memoir, in the critical essay she considers the idea that feeling bad constitutes the lived experience of neoliberal capitalism.

Cvetkovich draws on an unusual archive, including accounts of early Christian acedia and spiritual despair, texts connecting the histories of slavery and colonialism with their violent present-day legacies, and utopian spaces created from lesbian feminist practices of crafting. She herself seeks to craft a queer cultural analysis that accounts for depression as a historical category, a felt experience, and a point of entry into discussions about theory, contemporary culture, and everyday life. Depression: A Public Feeling suggests that utopian visions can reside in daily habits and practices, such as writing and yoga, and it highlights the centrality of somatic and felt experience to political activism and social transformation.

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Do Emotions Help or Hurt Decisionmaking?
A Hedgefoxian Perspective
Kathleen D. Vohs
Russell Sage Foundation, 2007
Philosophers have long tussled over whether moral judgments are the products of logical reasoning or simply emotional reactions. From Jane Austen's Sense and Sensibility to the debates of modern psychologists, the question of whether feeling or sober rationality is the better guide to decision making has been a source of controversy. In Do Emotions Help or Hurt Decision Making? Kathleen Vohs, Roy Baumeister, and George Loewenstein lead a group of prominent psychologists and economists in exploring the empirical evidence on how emotions shape judgments and choices. Researchers on emotion and cognition have staked out many extreme positions: viewing emotions as either the driving force behind cognition or its side effect, either an impediment to sound judgment or a guide to wise decisions. The contributors to Do Emotions Help or Hurt Decision Making? provide a richer perspective, exploring the circumstances that shape whether emotions play a harmful or helpful role in decisions. Roy Baumeister, C. Nathan DeWall, and Liqing Zhang show that while an individual's current emotional state can lead to hasty decisions and self-destructive behavior, anticipating future emotional outcomes can be a helpful guide to making sensible decisions. Eduardo Andrade and Joel Cohen find that a positive mood can negatively affect people's willingness to act altruistically. Happy people, when made aware of risks associated with altruistic acts, become wary of jeopardizing their own well-being. Benoît Monin, David Pizarro, and Jennifer Beer find that whether emotion or reason matters more in moral evaluation depends on the specific issue in question. Individual characteristics often mediate the effect of emotions on decisions. Catherine Rawn, Nicole Mead, Peter Kerkhof, and Kathleen Vohs find that whether an individual makes a decision based on emotion depends both on the type of decision in question and the individual's level of self-esteem. And Quinn Kennedy and Mara Mather show that the elderly are better able to regulate their emotions, having learned from experience to anticipate the emotional consequences of their behavior. Do Emotions Help or Hurt Decision Making? represents a significant advance toward a comprehensive theory of emotions and cognition that accounts for the nuances of the mental processes involved. This landmark book will be a stimulus to scholarly debates as well as an informative guide to everyday decisions.
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Doing Emotions History
Edited by Susan Matt and Peter N. Stearns
University of Illinois Press, 2013
How do emotions change over time? When is hate honorable? What happens when "love" is translated into different languages? Such questions are now being addressed by historians who trace how emotions have been expressed and understood in different cultures throughout history. Doing Emotions History explores the history of feelings such as love, joy, grief, nostalgia as well as a wide range of others, bringing together the latest and most innovative scholarship on the history of the emotions.
 
Spanning the globe from Asia and Europe to North America, the book provides a crucial overview of this emerging discipline. An international group of scholars reviews the field's current status and variations, addresses many of its central debates, provides models and methods, and proposes an array of possibilities for future research. Emphasizing the field's intersections with anthropology, psychology, sociology, neuroscience, data-mining, and popular culture, this groundbreaking volume demonstrates the affecting potential of doing emotions history.
 
Contributors are John Corrigan, Pam Epstein, Nicole Eustace, Norman Kutcher, Brent Malin, Susan Matt, Darrin McMahon, Peter N. Stearns, and Mark Steinberg.

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Embodied Protests
Emotions and Women's Health in Bolivia
Maria Tapias
University of Illinois Press, 2015
Embodied Protests examines how Bolivia's hesitant courtship with globalization manifested in the visceral and emotional diseases that afflicted many Bolivian women. Drawing on case studies conducted among market- and working-class women in the provincial town of Punata, Maria Tapias examines how headaches and debilidad, so-called normal bouts of infant diarrhea, and the malaise oppressing whole communities were symptomatic of profound social suffering. She approaches the narratives of distress caused by poverty, domestic violence, and the failure of social networks as constituting the knowledge that shaped their understandings of well-being. At the crux of Tapias's definitive analysis is the idea that individual health perceptions, actions, and practices cannot be separated from local cultural narratives or from global and economic forces.

Evocative and compassionate, Embodied Protests gives voice to the human costs of the ongoing neoliberal experiment.

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Emotion
A Comprehensive Phenomenology of Theories and Their Meanings for Therapy
James Hillman
Northwestern University Press, 1962
What is the meaning of strong emotions? What is emotion itself? What is really happening in therapy when people "express their emotions?"

As James Hillman writes in his new preface to this sweeping study, he intends nothing less than "to vitalize a standard topic of academic psychology by making the theory of emotion as crucial as is emotion itself in our lives." Hillman offers an informative and readable survey of a range of theories of emotion, focusing on the twentieth century but moving also from Greek thought to early Christianity to nineteenth-century German physiology. The work challenges readers to rethink our concepts and thereby to re-experience emotional phenomena.

Hillman's study contributes to today's renewed interest in the history of the body. Furthermore, his understanding of emotions in terms of epiphany makes a stimulating contribution to phenomenology. It is equally thought-provoking for the therapist, the philosopher, the intellectual historian, and the general reader.
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Emotional Bodies
The Historical Performativity of Emotions
Edited by Dolores Martín Moruno and Beatriz Pichel
University of Illinois Press, 2019
What do emotions actually do? Recent work in the history of emotions and its intersections with cultural studies and new materialism has produced groundbreaking revelations around this fundamental question. In Emotional Bodies, contributors pick up these threads of inquiry to propose a much-needed theoretical framework for further study of materiality of emotions, with an emphasis on emotions' performative nature. Drawing on diverse sources and wide-ranging theoretical approaches, they illuminate how various persons and groups—patients, criminals, medieval religious communities, revolutionary crowds, and humanitarian agencies—perform emotional practices. A section devoted to medical history examines individual bodies while a section on social and political histories studies the emergence of collective bodies.

Contributors: Jon Arrizabalaga, Rob Boddice, Leticia Fernández-Fontecha, Emma Hutchison, Dolores Martín-Moruno, Piroska Nagy, Beatriz Pichel, María Rosón, Pilar León-Sanz, Bertrand Taithe, and Gian Marco Vidor.

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The Emotional Mind
The Affective Roots of Culture and Cognition
Stephen T. Asma and Rami Gabriel
Harvard University Press, 2019

Tracing the leading role of emotions in the evolution of the mind, a philosopher and a psychologist pair up to reveal how thought and culture owe less to our faculty for reason than to our capacity to feel.

Many accounts of the human mind concentrate on the brain’s computational power. Yet, in evolutionary terms, rational cognition emerged only the day before yesterday. For nearly 200 million years before humans developed a capacity to reason, the emotional centers of the brain were hard at work. If we want to properly understand the evolution of the mind, we must explore this more primal capability that we share with other animals: the power to feel.

Emotions saturate every thought and perception with the weight of feelings. The Emotional Mind reveals that many of the distinctive behaviors and social structures of our species are best discerned through the lens of emotions. Even the roots of so much that makes us uniquely human—art, mythology, religion—can be traced to feelings of caring, longing, fear, loneliness, awe, rage, lust, playfulness, and more.

From prehistoric cave art to the songs of Hank Williams, Stephen T. Asma and Rami Gabriel explore how the evolution of the emotional mind stimulated our species’ cultural expression in all its rich variety. Bringing together insights and data from philosophy, biology, anthropology, neuroscience, and psychology, The Emotional Mind offers a new paradigm for understanding what it is that makes us so unique.

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An Emotional State
The Politics of Emotion in Postwar West German Culture
Anna M. Parkinson
University of Michigan Press, 2015
This literary-historical study seeks to dismantle the prevailing notion that Germany, in the period following the Second World War, exhibited an “inability to mourn,” arguing that in fact this period experienced a surge of affect. Anna Parkinson examines the emotions explicitly manifested or addressed in a variety of German cultural artifacts, while also identifying previously unacknowledged (and undertheorized) affective structures implicitly at work during the country’s national crisis. Much of the scholarship in the expanding field of affect theory distrusts Freudian psychoanalysis, which does not differentiate between emotion and affect.
 
One of the book’s major contributions is that it offers an analytical distinction between emotion and affect, finding a compelling way to talk about affect and emotion that is informed by affect theory but that integrates psychoanalysis. The study draws on the psychoanalytic writings of Freud, Margarete and Alexander Mitscherlich, and André Green, while engaging with interdisciplinary theorists of affect including Barbara Rosenwein, Lauren Berlant, Ann Cvetkovich, and Eve Kosofsky Sedgwick among many others. 


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Emotions at Work
Normative Control, Organizations, and Culture in Japan and America
Aviad E. Raz
Harvard University Press, 2002
Our work life is filled with emotions. How we feel on the job, what we say we feel, and what feelings we display—all these are important aspects of organizational behavior and workplace culture. Rather than focusing on the psychology of personal emotions at work, however, this study concentrates on emotions as role requirements, on workplace emotions that combine the private with the public, the personal with the social, and the authentic with the masked. In this cross-cultural study of "emotion management," the author argues that even though the goals of normative control in factories, offices, and shops may be similar across cultures, organizational structure and the surrounding culture affect how that control is discussed and conceived.
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The Emotions of Protest
James M. Jasper
University of Chicago Press, 2018
In Donald Trump’s America, protesting has roared back into fashion. The Women’s March, held the day after Trump’s inauguration, may have been the largest in American history, and resonated around the world. Between Trump’s tweets and the march’s popularity, it is clear that displays of anger dominate American politics once again.

There is an extensive body of research on protest, but the focus has mostly been on the calculating brain—a byproduct of structuralism and cognitive studies—and less on the feeling brain. James M. Jasper’s work changes that, as he pushes the boundaries of our present understanding of the social world. In The Emotions of Protest, Jasper lays out his argument, showing that it is impossible to separate cognition and emotion. At a minimum, he says, we cannot understand the Tea Party or Occupy Wall Street or pro- and anti-Trump rallies without first studying the fears and anger, moral outrage, and patterns of hate and love that their members feel.

This is a book centered on protest, but Jasper also points toward broader paths of inquiry that have the power to transform the way social scientists picture social life and action. Through emotions, he says, we are embedded in a variety of environmental, bodily, social, moral, and temporal contexts, as we feel our way both consciously and unconsciously toward some things and away from others. Politics and collective action have always been a kind of laboratory for working out models of human action more generally, and emotions are no exception. Both hearts and minds rely on the same feelings racing through our central nervous systems. Protestors have emotions, like everyone else, but theirs are thinking hearts, not bleeding hearts. Brains can feel, and hearts can think.
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Emotions, Passions, and Power in Renaissance Italy
Fabrizio Ricciardelli
Amsterdam University Press, 2015
Emotions depend on language, cultural practices, expectation and moral beliefs. Hate, fear, cruelty and love are always turning history into the history of passion and lust, because emotional life is always ready to overflow intellectual life. This fascinating study of emotion in Renaissance Italy shows that emotions are built and created by the society in which they are expressed and conditioned. The contributors examine, among others, the emotional language of the court, around public execution, religious practices and during outbreaks of disease.
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Emptiness
Feeling Christian in America
John Corrigan
University of Chicago Press, 2015
For many Christians in America, becoming filled with Christ first requires being empty of themselves—a quality often overlooked in religious histories. In Emptiness, John Corrigan highlights for the first time the various ways that American Christianity has systematically promoted the cultivation of this feeling.  

Corrigan examines different kinds of emptiness essential to American Christianity, such as the emptiness of deep longing, the emptying of the body through fasting or weeping, the emptiness of the wilderness, and the emptiness of historical time itself. He argues, furthermore, that emptiness is closely connected to the ways Christian groups differentiate themselves: many groups foster a sense of belonging not through affirmation, but rather avowal of what they and their doctrines are not. Through emptiness, American Christians are able to assert their identities as members of a religious community.

Drawing much-needed attention to a crucial aspect of American Christianity, Emptiness expands our understanding of historical and contemporary Christian practices. 
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The Escape
From a Seventeenth-Century Drawing Manual of the Face and Its Expressions
David Schutter
University of Chicago Press, 2021
Charles Le Brun’s drawing manual on human emotions has been used for centuries by artists and students as a model for depicting facial expressions. In David Schutter’s work, Le Brun’s manual is set to a different direction—a series of abstract drawings recalling vestiges of the human face animated by emotion. But Schutter’s drawings are neither copies nor portraiture. Rather, they are reflections on how Lebrun’s renderings were made.

Collected here, Schutter’s work recreates not the subject matter but the very values of Lebrun’s drawings—light, gesture, scale, and handling of materials. The cross-hatching in the original was used to make classical tone and volume, in Schutter’s hand the technique makes for unstable impressions of strained neck and deeply furrowed brow, or for drawing marks and scribbles unto themselves. As such, these drawings end up denying a neat closure—unlike their academic source material—and render unsettling states of mind that require repeated viewing. Accompanied by essays from art critic Barry Schwabsky and Neubauer Collegium curator Dieter Roelstraete, The Escape will appeal to students, critics, and admirers of seventeenth-century, modern, and contemporary art alike.
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The Expression of the Emotions in Man and Animals
Charles Darwin
University of Chicago Press, 1965
Darwin's work of 1872 still provides the point of departure for research in the theory of emotion and expression. Although he lacked the modern research tool of cybernetics, his basic methods have not been improved upon: the study of infants, of the insane, of paintings and sculpture, of some of the commoner animals; the use of photographs of expression submitted to different judges; and the comparative study of expression among different peoples. This new edition will be warmly welcomed by those behavioral scientists who have recently shown an intense interest in the scientific study of expression. Lay readers, too, will be struck by the freshness and directness of this book, which includes, among other data, Darwin's delightfully objective analysis of his own baby's smiles and pouts.
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Fear
Across the Disciplines
Jan Plamper
University of Pittsburgh Press, 2012
This volume provides a cross-disciplinary examination of fear, that most unruly of our emotions, by offering a broad survey of the psychological, biological, and philosophical basis of fear in historical and contemporary contexts. The contributors, leading figures in clinical psychology, neuroscience, the social sciences, and the humanities, consider categories of intentionality, temporality, admixture, spectacle, and politics in evaluating conceptions of fear.

    Individual chapters treat manifestations of fear in the mass panic of the stock market crash of 1929, as spectacle in warfare and in horror films, and as a political tool to justify security measures in the wake of terrorist acts. They also describe the biological and evolutionary roots of fear, fear as innate versus learned behavior in both humans and animals, and conceptions of human “passions” and their self-mastery from late antiquity to the early modern era. Additionally, the contributors examine theories of intentional and non-intentional reactivity, the process of fear-memory coding, and contemporary psychology’s emphasis on anxiety disorders.

Overall, the authors point to fear as a dense and variable web of responses to external and internal stimuli. Our thinking about these reactions is just as complex. In response, this volume opens a dialogue between science and the humanities to afford a more complete view of an emotion that has shaped human behavior since time immemorial.
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Feeling Godly
Religious Affections and Christian Contact in Early North America
Caroline Wigginton
University of Massachusetts Press, 2021
In 1746, Jonathan Edwards described his philosophy on the process of Christian conversion in A Treatise Concerning Religious Affections. For Edwards, a strict Congregationalist, true conversion is accompanied by a new heart and yields humility, forgiveness, and love—affections that work a change in the person's nature. But, how did other early American communities understand religious affections and come to recognize their manifestation?

Feeling Godly brings together well-known and highly regarded scholars of early American history and literature, Native American studies, African American history, and religious studies to investigate the shape, feel, look, theology, and influence of religious affections in early American sites of contact with and between Christians. While remaining focused on the question of religious affections, these essays span a wide range of early North American cultures, affiliations, practices, and devotions, and enable a comparative approach that draws together a history of emotions with a history of religion.

In addition to the volume editors, this collection includes essays from Joanna Brooks, Kathleen Donegan, Melissa Frost, Stephanie Kirk, Jon Sensbach, Scott Manning Stevens, and Mark Valeri, with an afterword by Barbara H. Rosenwein.
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Feeling Religion
John Corrigan, editor
Duke University Press, 2018
The contributors to Feeling Religion analyze the historical and contemporary entwinement of emotion, religion, spirituality, and secularism. They show how attending to these entanglements transforms understandings of metaphysics, ethics, ritual, religious music and poetry, the environment, popular culture, and the secular while producing new angles from which to approach familiar subjects. At the same time, their engagement with race, ethnicity, gender, sexuality, and nation in studies of topics as divergent as documentary film, Islamic environmentalism, and Jewish music demonstrates the ways in which interrogating emotion's role in religious practice and interpretation is refiguring the field of religious studies and beyond.

Contributors. Diana Fritz Cates, John Corrigan, Anna M. Gade, M. Gail Hamner, Abby Kluchin, Jessica Johnson, June McDaniel, David Morgan, Sarah M. Ross, Donovan Schaefer, Mark Wynn
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The Female Complaint
The Unfinished Business of Sentimentality in American Culture
Lauren Berlant
Duke University Press, 2008
The Female Complaint is part of Lauren Berlant’s groundbreaking “national sentimentality” project charting the emergence of the U.S. political sphere as an affective space of attachment and identification. In this book, Berlant chronicles the origins and conventions of the first mass-cultural “intimate public” in the United States, a “women’s culture” distinguished by a view that women inevitably have something in common and are in need of a conversation that feels intimate and revelatory. As Berlant explains, “women’s” books, films, and television shows enact a fantasy that a woman’s life is not just her own, but an experience understood by other women, no matter how dissimilar they are. The commodified genres of intimacy, such as “chick lit,” circulate among strangers, enabling insider self-help talk to flourish in an intimate public. Sentimentality and complaint are central to this commercial convention of critique; their relation to the political realm is ambivalent, as politics seems both to threaten sentimental values and to provide certain opportunities for their extension.

Pairing literary criticism and historical analysis, Berlant explores the territory of this intimate public sphere through close readings of U.S. women’s literary works and their stage and film adaptations. Her interpretation of Uncle Tom’s Cabin and its literary descendants reaches from Harriet Beecher Stowe to Toni Morrison’s Beloved, touching on Shirley Temple, James Baldwin, and The Bridges of Madison County along the way. Berlant illuminates different permutations of the women’s intimate public through her readings of Edna Ferber’s Show Boat; Fannie Hurst’s Imitation of Life; Olive Higgins Prouty’s feminist melodrama Now, Voyager; Dorothy Parker’s poetry, prose, and Academy Award–winning screenplay for A Star Is Born; the Fay Weldon novel and Roseanne Barr film The Life and Loves of a She-Devil; and the queer, avant-garde film Showboat 1988–The Remake. The Female Complaint is a major contribution from a leading Americanist.

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Gender, Emotion, and the Family
Leslie Brody
Harvard University Press, 1999

Do women express their feelings more than men? Popular stereotypes say they do, but in this provocative book, Leslie Brody breaks with conventional wisdom. Integrating a wealth of perspectives and research--biological, sociocultural, developmental--her work explores the nature and extent of gender differences in emotional expression, as well as the endlessly complex question of how such differences come about.

Nurture, far more than nature, emerges here as the stronger force in fashioning gender differences in emotional expression. Brody shows that whether and how men and women express their feelings varies widely from situation to situation and from culture to culture, and depends on a number of particular characteristics including age, ethnicity, cultural background, power, and status.

Especially pertinent is the organization of the family, in which boys and girls elicit and absorb different emotional strategies. Brody also examines the importance of gender roles, whether in the family, the peer group, or the culture at large, as men and women use various patterns of emotional expression to adapt to power and status imbalances.

Lucid and level-headed, Gender, Emotion, and the Family offers an unusually rich and nuanced picture of the great range of male and female emotional styles, and the variety of the human character.

[more]

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HAVING A GOOD CRY
EFFEMINATE FEELINGS & POP-CULTURE FORMS
ROBYN R. WARHOL
The Ohio State University Press, 2003

Robyn R. Warhol’s goal is to investigate the effects of readers’ emotional responses to formulaic fiction of the nineteenth and twentieth centuries on gendered subjectivity. She argues that modern literary and cultural studies have ignored nonsexual affectivity in their inquiries. The book elaborates on Warhol’s theory of affect and then focuses on sentimental stories, marriage plots, serialized novels, and soap operas as distinct genres producing specific feelings among fans.

Popular narrative forms use formulas to bring up familiar patterns of feelings in the audiences who love them. This book looks at the patterns of feelings that some nineteenth- and twentieth-century popular genres evoke, and asks how those patterns are related to gender. Soap operas and sentimentalism are generally derided as “effeminate” forms because their emotional range is seen as hyperfeminine. Having a Good Cry presents a celebration of effeminate feelings and works toward promoting more flexible, less pejorative concepts of gender. Using a psychophysiological rather than a psychoanalytic approach to reading and emotion, Warhol seeks to make readers more conscious of what is happening to the gendered body when we read.

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Head and Heart
Perspectives from Religion and Psychology
Fraser Watts
Templeton Press, 2013
Theologians and religious figures often draw a distinction between religion of the ‘”head” and religion of the “heart,” but few stop to ask what the terms “head” and “heart” actually denote. Many assume that this distinction has a scriptural basis, and yet many Biblical authors used the word “heart” as a synonym for “mind.” In fact, there isn’t a strict separation of the two concepts until the modern period, as in Pascal’s famous claim that “the heart has its reasons that reason can not know.” Since then, many other philosophers and theologians have made a similar distinction.

The fact that this distinction has been so persistent makes it an important area of study. Head and Heart: Perspectives from Religion and Psychology takes an inter-disciplinary ap­proach, linking the thinking of theologians and philosophers with theory and research in present-day psychology. The tradition of using framing questions that have been developed in theology and philosophy can now be brought into dialogue with scientific approaches developed within cognitive psy­chology and neuroscience. Though these scientific approaches have not generally used the terms “head” and “heart,” they have arrived at a similar distinction in other ways. There is a notable convergence upon the realization that humans have two modes of cognition at their disposal that correspond to “head” and “heart.” The time is therefore ripe to bring the approaches of theology and science in to dialogue—an impor­tant dialogue that has been heretofore neglected.
 
Head and Heart draws on the unique expertise in relating theology and psychology of the University of Cambridge’s Psychology and Religion Research Group (PRRG). In addi­tion to providing historical and theoretical perspectives, the contributors to this volume will also address practical issues arising from the group’s applied work in deradicalisation and religious education.
 
Contributors include Geoff Dumbreck, Nicholas J. S. Gibson, Malcolm Guite, Liz Gulliford, Russell Re Manning, Glendon L. Moriarty, Sally Myers, Sara Savage, Carissa A. Sharp, Fraser Watts, Harris Wiseman, and Bonnie Poon Zahl.
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How Emotions Work
Jack Katz
University of Chicago Press, 1999
Many of the ways in which we express and react to emotions make very little sense. From the tears that mark both the best and worst moments in our lives to the rages sparked by the most trivial of traffic annoyances, emotions surprise us-they lead us to act in ways contrary to our better judgment, and they always seem to lie just beyond our control. In How Emotions Work, Jack Katz observes situations ranging from a criminal's interrogation-room breakdown to a child's temper tantrum, and offers new approaches to understanding our emotions, their sources, and the behavior they lead to, all with unprecedented clarity.
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How Lifeworlds Work
Emotionality, Sociality, and the Ambiguity of Being
Michael Jackson
University of Chicago Press, 2017
Michael Jackson has spent much of his career elaborating his rich conception of lifeworlds, mining his ethnographic and personal experience for insights into how our subjective and social lives are mutually constituted.
 
In How Lifeworlds Work, Jackson draws on years of ethnographic fieldwork in West Africa to highlight the dynamic quality of human relationships and reinvigorate the study of kinship and ritual. How, he asks, do we manage the perpetual process of accommodation between social norms and personal emotions, impulses, and desires? How are these two dimensions of lived reality joined, and how are the dual imperatives of individual expression and collective viability managed? Drawing on the pragmatist tradition, psychology, and phenomenology, Jackson offers an unforgettable, beautifully written account of how we make, unmake, and remake, our lifeworlds. 
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Humoring the Body
Emotions and the Shakespearean Stage
Gail Kern Paster
University of Chicago Press, 2004
Though modern readers no longer believe in the four humors of Galenic naturalism—blood, choler, melancholy, and phlegm—early modern thought found in these bodily fluids key to explaining human emotions and behavior. In Humoring the Body, Gail Kern Paster proposes a new way to read the emotions of the early modern stage so that contemporary readers may recover some of the historical particularity in early modern expressions of emotional self-experience.

Using notions drawn from humoral medical theory to untangle passages from important moral treatises, medical texts, natural histories, and major plays of Shakespeare and his contemporaries, Paster identifies a historical phenomenology in the language of affect by reconciling the significance of the four humors as the language of embodied emotion. She urges modern readers to resist the influence of post-Cartesian abstraction and the disembodiment of human psychology lest they miss the body-mind connection that still existed for Shakespeare and his contemporaries and constrained them to think differently about how their emotions were embodied in a premodern world.
[more]

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I Hear Voices
A Memoir of Love, Death, and the Radio
Jean Feraca
University of Wisconsin Press

Jean Feraca’s road to self-fulfillment has been as quirky and demanding as the characters in her incredible memoir. A veteran of several decades of public radio broadcasting, Feraca is also a writer and a poet. She is a talk show host beloved for her unique mixture of the humanities, poetry, and journalism, and is the creator of the pioneering international cultural affairs radio program Here on Earth: Radio without Borders.
    In this searing memoir, Feraca traces her own emergence. She pulls back the curtain on her private life, revealing unforgettable portraits of the characters in her brawling Italian-American family: Jenny, the grandmother, the devil woman who threw Casey Stengel down an excavation pit; Dolly, the mother, a cross between Long John Silver and the Wife of Bath, who in battling mental illness becomes the scourge of a Lutheran nursing home; and Stephen, the brilliant but troubled older brother, an anthropologist adopted by a Sioux tribe. In a new chapter that reinforces and ties together the book’s exploration of the multiple forms of love, Jean introduces us to Roger, a Wildman and her husband’s best friend with whom she, too, develops an extraordinary intimacy. A selection of fifteen of Feraca’s poems add counterpoint to her engaging prose.

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Interior States
Institutional Consciousness and the Inner Life of Democracy in the Antebellum United States
Christopher Castiglia
Duke University Press, 2008
In Interior States Christopher Castiglia focuses on U.S. citizens’ democratic impulse: their ability to work with others to imagine genuinely democratic publics while taking divergent views into account. Castiglia contends that citizens of the early United States were encouraged to locate this social impulse not in associations with others but in the turbulent and conflicted interiors of their own bodies. He describes how the human interior—with its battles between appetite and restraint, desire and deferral—became a displacement of the divided sociality of nineteenth-century America’s public sphere and contributed to the vanishing of that sphere in the twentieth century and the twenty-first. Drawing insightful connections between political structures, social relations, and cultural forms, he explains that as the interior came to reflect the ideological conflicts of the social world, citizens were encouraged to (mis)understand vigilant self-scrutiny and self-management as effective democratic action.

In the late eighteenth century and early nineteenth, as discourses of interiority gained prominence, so did powerful counter-narratives. Castiglia reveals the flamboyant pages of antebellum popular fiction to be an archive of unruly democratic aspirations. Through close readings of works by Maria Monk and George Lippard, Walt Whitman and Timothy Shay Arthur, Hannah Webster Foster and Hannah Crafts, and Nathaniel Hawthorne and Herman Melville, Castiglia highlights a refusal to be reformed or self-contained. In antebellum authors’ representations of nervousness, desire, appetite, fantasy, and imagination, he finds democratic strivings that refused to disappear. Taking inspiration from those writers and turning to the present, Castiglia advocates a humanism-without-humans that, denied the adjudicative power of interiority, promises to release democracy from its inner life and to return it to the public sphere where U.S. citizens may yet create unprecedented possibilities for social action.

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Intoxication
An Ethnography of Effervescent Revelry
Sébastien Tutenges
Rutgers University Press, 2023
For two decades, Sébastien Tutenges has conducted research in bars, nightclubs, festivals, drug dens, nightlife resorts, and underground dance parties in a quest to answer a fundamental question: Why do people across cultures gather regularly to intoxicate themselves?

Vivid and at times deeply personal, this book offers new insights into a wide variety of intoxicating experiences, from the intimate feeling of connection among concertgoers to the adrenaline-fueled rush of a fight, to the thrill of jumping off a balcony into a swimming pool. Tutenges shows what it means and feels to move beyond the ordinary into altered states in which the transgressive, spectacular, and unexpected take place.

He argues that the primary aim of group intoxication is the religious experience that Émile Durkheim calls collective effervescence, the essence of which is a sense of connecting with other people and being part of a larger whole. This experience is empowering and emboldening and may lead to crime and deviance, but it is at the same time vital to our humanity because it strengthens social bonds and solidarity.

The book fills important gaps in Durkheim’s social theory and contributes to current debates in micro-sociology as well as cultural criminology and cultural sociology. Here, for the first time, readers will discover a detailed account of collective effervescence in contemporary society that includes: an explanation of what collective effervescence is; a description of the conditions that generate collective effervescence; a typology of the varieties of collective effervescence; a discussion of how collective effervescence manifests in the realm of nightlife, politics, sports, and religion; and an analysis of how commercial forces amplify and capitalize on the universal human need for intoxication.

This book is also freely available online as an open access digital edition.
Download the open access ebook here.
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Jealousy
Experiences and Solutions
Hildegard Baumgart
University of Chicago Press, 1990
Deeply ingrained in human nature, jealousy occurs in everyone's life, with varying intensity and significance. Profoundly puzzling, jealousy provokes humans to irrational, sometimes violent acts against others or against themselves. It is a passion that has fascinated writers, storytellers, and audiences through the ages.

Hildegard Baumgart, a practicing marriage counselor, pursues a multilayered exploration of jealousy that is at once public history, based on literary and cultural records, and private history, drawn from individual clinical cases and psychoanalytic practice. In the process she discovers provocative new answers to two central questions: How can one understand jealousy, whether one's own or another's?

Baumgart focuses on the fear of comparison with the rival that motivates much jealousy, and she shows how this idea is, in fact, built into both mythology and theology. She adroitly combines a rich array of documentation and evidence: detailed, clinical descriptions of the classic dilemmas of love triangles; a history of the concept of jealousy in the Judeo-Christian tradition; examples from the lives and writings of a fascinating gallery of authors (Shakespeare, Tolstoy, and Goethe, among others); discussions of Freud's writings on jealousy and of later psychoanalytic methodologies such as systems analysis, paradoxical intervention, and communications theory.

Throughout her narrative, Baumgart writes with compassion and feeling. Drawing on her personal experience of jealousy, her own psychoanalysis, and anecdotes from her counseling work and the clinical literature at large, she presents many fascinating vignettes of the painful—sometimes crippling—effects of jealousy as seen from the standpoints of both sufferer and therapist. What is more, she offers sensitive and sensible solutions to the problem of jealousy.

Baumgart's intriguing tapestry of the varied manifestations and interpretations of jealousy gives extraordinary resonance to the case histories she describes. In providing such a panoramic view, Jealousy invites everyone—analysts, counselors, sociologists, jealous lovers, and avid readers of advice columns—to reconsider both the cultural significance and personal meaning of this universal emotion.
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THE JOY OF SPIRITUAL GROWTH
REAL ENCOUNTERS
Frank Rose and Robert Maginel
Swedenborg Foundation Publishers, 1999

Frank Rose and Bob Maginel provide people seeking spiritual growth and recovery a practical handbook for accomplishing their goals. Recognizing that spiritual growth can be stymied by materialism and external preoccupations, the authors offer tasks and exercises that can be used repeatedly to help tame the "wild beasts," the negative emotions that can control our lives and destroy our relationships with others.

A special feature of the book is the "Reporting on the Task" section at the end of each of the twelve tasks, in which participants who were enrolled in a real-life twelve-week seminar share their struggles in their own words. Their successes and setbacks in applying the tasks to daily life underscore the ongoing nature of the recovery process and remind us that the joy of spiritual growth is linked to enjoying the journey.


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Laughing Saints and Righteous Heroes
Emotional Rhythms in Social Movement Groups
Erika Summers Effler
University of Chicago Press, 2010
Why do people keep fighting for social causes in the face of consistent failure? Why do they risk their physical, emotional, and financial safety on behalf of strangers? How do these groups survive high turnover and emotional burnout?

To explore these questions, Erika Summers Effler undertook three years of ethnographic fieldwork with two groups: anti–death penalty activists STOP and the Catholic Workers, who strive to alleviate poverty. In both communities, members must contend with problems that range from the broad to the intimately personal. Adverse political conditions, internal conflict, and fluctuations in financial resources create a backdrop of daily frustration—but watching an addict relapse or an inmate’s execution are much more devastating setbacks. Summers Effler finds that overcoming these obstacles, recovering from failure, and maintaining the integrity of the group require a constant process of emotional fine-tuning, and she demonstrates how activists do this through thoughtful analysis and a lucid rendering of their deeply affecting stories.
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Life Breaks In
A Mood Almanack
Mary Cappello
University of Chicago Press, 2016
 
Some books start at point A, take you by the hand, and carefully walk you to point B, and on and on.
 
This is not one of those books. This book is about mood, and how it works in and with us as complicated, imperfectly self-knowing beings existing in a world that impinges and infringes on us, but also regularly suffuses us with beauty and joy and wonder. You don’t write that book as a linear progression—you write it as a living, breathing, richly associative, and, crucially, active, investigation. Or at least you do if you’re as smart and inventive as Mary Cappello.
 
What is a mood? How do we think about and understand and describe moods and their endless shadings? What do they do to and for us, and how can we actively generate or alter them? These are all questions Cappello takes up as she explores mood in all its manifestations: we travel with her from the childhood tables of “arts and crafts” to mood rooms and reading rooms, forgotten natural history museums and 3-D View-Master fairytale tableaux; from the shifting palette of clouds and weather to the music that defines us and the voices that carry us.  The result is a book as brilliantly unclassifiable as mood itself, blue and green and bright and beautiful, funny and sympathetic, as powerfully investigative as it is richly contemplative.
 
“I’m one of those people who mistrusts a really good mood,” Cappello writes early on. If that made you nod in recognition, well, maybe you’re one of Mary Cappello’s people; you owe it to yourself to crack Life Breaks In and see for sure.
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front cover of Literature, Emotions, and Pre-Modern War
Literature, Emotions, and Pre-Modern War
Conflict in Medieval and Early Modern Europe
Claire McIlroy
Arc Humanities Press, 2021
This collection assembles work by some of the foremost English-speaking scholars of pre-modern thought and culture and is the fruit of the Australian Research Council's ground-breaking Centre of Excellence for the History of Emotion. The impact of war, a human activity that is both public and politically charged, is examined as it affects private human lives caught up in public and political situations. The essays, many of them influenced by the burgeoning field of study in the history of emotions, examine the often unconsidered effects of war—on the individual and on the commune—as revealed in the study of well-known texts such as Beowulf, Piers Plowman, Malory’s Le Morte Darthur, and Chaucer’s Troilus and Criseyde, as well as other lesser-known works that mirror the concerns of the society in which they were conceived. These latter range from the twelfth-century chansons of the Crusades, through the fifteenth-century French and English political works of Alain Chartier, to the twentieth-century anti-war satirical films of Mario Monicelli.
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The Logic of Desire
Aquinas on Emotion
Nicholas E. Lombardo, O.P.
Catholic University of America Press, 2011
Focusing on the Summa theologiae, Nicholas Lombardo contributes to the recovery, reconstruction, and critique of Aquinas's account of emotion in dialogue with both the Thomist tradition and contemporary analytic philosophy
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Lost Time
On Remembering and Forgetting in Late Modern Culture
David Gross
University of Massachusetts Press, 2009
What is the value of memory in human culture? More specifically, what role should remembering—and forgetting—play in our daily lives? These are the central questions that David Gross addresses in this original and thought-provoking book. For centuries, Gross points out, remembering was considered essential not only to the perpetuation of society but to the maintenance of individual existence. Survival often depended on the memory of how to perform specific tasks, what values to honor, and what personal or collective identity to assume. Remembering, in short, put one in touch with the things that mattered, engendering wholeness and wisdom. Forgetting, on the other hand, led to emptiness, ignorance, and death. With the advent of modernity, however, doubts about the value of memory grew while the negative implications of forgetting were reevaluated. In many quarters, forgetting came to be defended for the way it frees us from the past, opening the door to new perceptions, new possibilities, and new beginnings. Now, in late modernity, Gross argues, we find ourselves in an unprecedented situation. For the first time in history, we are able to decide, without the pressure of social or cultural constraints, whether we want to remember or forget and to live our lives accordingly. But which is the better choice? Should we build our lives upon the meanings and values of a faded past? If so, what ought we to remember, and for what purpose? Or should we instead opt to forget what has come before and focus our attention on the present and future, thereby perpetually reinventing ourselves and the world we inhabit? According to Gross, our answers to these questions will determine not only who we are but what we will become as we pass from late modernity into the terra incognita of the "postmodern" age.
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Media and the Affective Life of Slavery
Allison Page
University of Minnesota Press, 2022

How media shapes our actions and feelings about race
 

Amid fervent conversations about antiracism and police violence, Media and the Affective Life of Slavery delivers vital new ideas about how our feelings about race are governed and normalized by our media landscape. Allison Page examines U.S. media from the 1960s to today, analyzing how media culture instructs viewers to act and feel in accordance with new racial norms created for an era supposedly defined by an end to legal racism.

From the classic television miniseries Roots to the edutainment video game Mission 2: Flight to Freedom and the popular website slaveryfootprint.org, Media and the Affective Life of Slavery provides an in-depth look at the capitalist and cultural artifacts that teach the U.S. public about slavery. Page theorizes media not only as a system of representation but also as a technology of citizenship and subjectivity, wherein race is seen as a problem to be solved. Ultimately, she argues that visual culture works through emotion, a powerful lever for shaping and managing racialized subjectivity. 

Media and the Affective Life of Slavery delivers compelling, provocative material and includes a wealth of archival research into such realms as news, entertainment, television, curricula, video games, and digital apps, providing new and innovative scholarship where none currently exists. 

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Metaphysical Disputations III and IV
On Being's Passions in General and Its Principles and On Transcendental Unity in General
Francisco Suarez
Catholic University of America Press, 2023
Francisco Suárez (1548-1617) was one of the most important philosophers and theologians of Early Modern Scholasticism. Although Suárez spent most of his academic career as a professor of theology, he is better known today for his Metaphysical Disputations (Salamanca, 1597). The present volume contains a facing-page English translation of Metaphysical Disputations III & IV. Metaphysical Disputation III offers a general treatment of the properties of being as such, while Metaphysical Disputation IV deals with one of these properties in particular, transcendental unity. The Latin text contained in this volume introduces a significant number of corrections to the text of the Vivès edition, the one standardly used by scholars of Suárez, and thus more faithfully reproduces the text of the first edition. The volume also contains a lengthy introduction that provides a detailed survey of the disputations’ principal claims and arguments.
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Microsociology
Discourse, Emotion, and Social Structure
Thomas J. Scheff
University of Chicago Press, 1990
Moving beyond the traditional boundaries of sociological investigation,
Thomas J. Scheff brings together the study of communication and the social
psychology of emotions to explore the microworld of thoughts, feelings,
and moods. Drawing on strikingly diverse and rich sources—the findings of
artificial intelligence and cognitive science, and examples from literary
dialogues and psychiatric interviews—Scheff provides an inventive account
of the nature of social life and a theory of motivation that brilliantly
accounts for the immense complexity involved in understanding even the most
routine conversation.

"A major contribution to some central debates in social theory at the
present time. . . . What Thomas Scheff seeks to develop is essentially a
quite novel account of the nature of social life, its relation to language
and human reflexivity, in which he insists upon the importance of a theory
of emotion. . . . A work of true originality and jolting impact. . . .
Microsociology is of exceptional interest, which bears witness to the
very creativity which it puts at the center of human social contact."
—Anthony Giddens, from the Foreword

"Scheff provides a rich theory that can easily generate further exploration. And he drives home the message that sociological work on interaction, social bonds, and society cannot ignore human emotionality."—Candace Clark, American Journal of Sociology

"This outstanding and ground-breaking little volume contains a wealth of original ideas that bring together many insights concerning the relationship of emotion to motivation in a wide variety of social settings. It is strongly recommended to all serious students of emotion, of society, and of human nature."—Melvin R. Lansky, American Journal of Psychiatry
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Misery and Company
Sympathy in Everyday Life
Candace Clark
University of Chicago Press, 1997
In a kind of social tour of sympathy, Candace Clark reveals that the emotional experience we call sympathy has a history, logic, and life of its own. Although sympathy may seem to be a natural, reflexive reaction, people are not born knowing when, for whom, and in what circumstances sympathy is appropriate. Rather, they learn elaborate, highly specific rules—different rules for men than for women—that guide when to feel or display sympathy, when to claim it, and how to accept it. Using extensive interviews, cultural artifacts, and "intensive eavesdropping" in public places, such as hospitals and funeral parlors, as well as analyzing charity appeals, blues lyrics, greeting cards, novels, and media reports, Clark shows that we learn culturally prescribed rules that govern our expression of sympathy.

"Clark's . . . research methods [are] inventive and her glimpses of U.S. life revealing. . . . And you have to love a social scientist so respectful of Miss Manners."—Clifford Orwin, Toronto Globe and Mail

"Clark offers a thought-provoking and quite interesting etiquette of sympathy according to which we ought to act in order to preserve the sympathy credits we can call on in time of need."—Virginia Quarterly Review
[more]

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Mixed Emotions
Beyond Fear and Hatred in International Conflict
Andrew A. G. Ross
University of Chicago Press, 2013
In recent years, it’s become increasingly clear that emotion plays a central role in global politics. For example, people readily care about acts of terrorism and humanitarian crises because they appeal to our compassion for human suffering. These struggles also command attention where social interactions have the power to produce or intensify the emotional responses of those who participate in them.
           
From passionate protests to poignant speeches, Andrew A. G. Ross analyzes high-emotion events with an eye to how they shape public sentiment and finds that there is no single answer. The politically powerful play to the public’s emotions to advance their political aims, and such appeals to emotion also often serve to sustain existing values and  institutions. But the affective dimension can produce profound change, particularly when a struggle in the present can be shown to line up with emotionally resonant events from the past. Extending his findings to well-studied conflicts, including the War on Terror and the violence in Rwanda and the Balkans, Ross identifies important sites of emotional impact missed by earlier research focused on identities and interests.

[more]

front cover of Mixed Feelings and Vexed Passions
Mixed Feelings and Vexed Passions
Exploring Emotions in Biblical Literature
F. Scott Spencer
SBL Press, 2017

A ground-breaking collection exploring the rich array of emotions in biblical literature

An international team of Hebrew Bible and New Testament scholars offers incisive case studies of passions displayed by divine and human figures in the biblical texts ranging from joy, happiness, and trust to grief, hate, and disgust. Essays address how biblical characters' feelings affect their relationship with God, one another, and the world and how these feelings mix together, for good or ill, for flourishing or vexation. Deeply engaged with both ancient and modern contexts, including the burgeoning interdisciplinary study of emotion in the humanities and sciences, these essays break down the artificial divide between reason and passion, cognition and emotion, thought and feeling in biblical study.

Features

  • Case studies drawn from multiple genres across the Bible: narrative, prophets, poetry, wisdom, Gospels, and letters
  • Helpful select bibliographies of interdisciplinary resources at the end of each essay
  • Critical balance between theory and practice and between method and close textual analysis
  • Distinctive ancient Hebrew and Greek uses of emotional terms and concepts compared with each other and with evolving understandings in Western culture
[more]

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Moral Emotions
Reclaiming the Evidence of the Heart
Anthony J. Steinbock
Northwestern University Press, 2014
Winner, 2015 CSCP Symposium Book Award

Moral Emotions builds upon the philosophical theory of persons begun in Phenomenology and Mysticism and marks a new stage of phenomenology. Author Anthony J. Steinbock finds personhood analyzing key emotions, called moral emotions. Moral Emotions offers a systematic account of the moral emotions, described here as pride, shame, and guilt as emotions of self-givenness; repentance, hope, and despair as emotions of possibility; and trusting, loving, and humility as emotions of otherness.
 
The author argues these reveal basic structures of interpersonal experience. By exhibiting their own kind of cognition and evidence, the moral emotions not only help to clarify the meaning of person, they reveal novel concepts of freedom, critique, and normativity. As such, they are able to engage our contemporary social imaginaries at the impasse of modernity and postmodernity.
[more]

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The Morality of Laughter
F. H. Buckley
University of Michigan Press, 2005
“Bravo! I’ll say nothing funny about it, for it is a
superior piece of work.”
—P. J. O’Rourke

“F. H. Buckley’s The Morality of Laughter is at once
a humorous look at serious matters and a serious
book about humor.”
Crisis Magazine

“Buckley has written a . ne and funny book that will
be read with pleasure and instruction.”
First Things

“. . . written elegantly and often wittily. . . .”
National Post

“. . . a fascinating philosophical exposition of
laughter. . . .”
National Review

“. . . at once a wise and highly amusing book.”
Wall Street Journal Online

“. . . a useful reminder that a cheery society is a
healthy one.”
Weekly Standard
[more]

front cover of Motivation – Mechanisms of the Mind and their Quest for Expression
Motivation – Mechanisms of the Mind and their Quest for Expression
Introduction to a Study on a Theoretical Model of the Process of Motivation
Menno A. Mennes
Amsterdam University Press, 2023
This Volume presents a first introduction to a thought-provoking Model of Motivation developed by Menno Mennes over a period of almost thirty years. The Model of Motivation in its approach presents a radical departure from everything that has appeared so far in literature on the subject.

And yet, it provides a surprisingly detailed account of how motivation works, which appears to be supported by findings from theories and research from current literature. In an unparalleled analysis, the Model seamlessly integrates these major theories into a consistent comprehensive approach to motivation, explaining not only the essentials of each theory, but also providing explanations for controversies that have hitherto remained largely unresolved. Motivation appears to be an 'inner dialogue', a stepwise, partly cyclical Process in which we deal with our surroundings that often interfere in our ambitions, our wishes and desires. Deep personal insights into those ‘Mechanisms of the Mind’ reveal implications that may lead to a fundamental, new understanding of the origins of many disturbing issues we witness in present-day society, including neglect and denial, intolerance, discord and polarization.
[more]

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Moving Politics
Emotion and ACT UP's Fight against AIDS
Deborah B. Gould
University of Chicago Press, 2009

In the late 1980s, after a decade spent engaged in more routine interest-group politics, thousands of lesbians and gay men responded to the AIDS crisis by defiantly and dramatically taking to the streets. But by the early 1990s, the organization they founded, ACT UP, was no more—even as the AIDS epidemic raged on. Weaving together interviews with activists, extensive research, and reflections on the author’s time as a member of the organization, Moving Politics is the first book to chronicle the rise and fall of ACT UP, highlighting a key factor in its trajectory: emotion.

Surprisingly overlooked by many scholars of social movements, emotion, Gould argues, plays a fundamental role in political activism. From anger to hope, pride to shame, and solidarity to despair, feelings played a significant part in ACT UP’s provocative style of protest, which included raucous demonstrations, die-ins, and other kinds of street theater. Detailing the movement’s public triumphs and private setbacks, Moving Politics is the definitive account of ACT UP’s origin, development, and decline as well as a searching look at the role of emotion in contentious politics.

[more]

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Notes on the Heart
Affective Issues in the Writing Classroom
Susan H. McLeod
Southern Illinois University Press, 1997

It has long been recognized that affect (that is, the noncognitive aspect of mental activity) plays a large role in writing and in learning to write. According to Susan H. McLeod, however, the model that has been most used for empirical research on the writing process is based on cognitive psychology and does not take into account affective phenomena. Nor does the social constructionist view of the writing process acknowledge the affective realm except in a very general way. To understand the complete picture, McLeod insists, we need to explore how cognitive, affective, and social elements interact as people write.

In this book, McLeod follows a group of students through a semester of writing assignments, tracking the students’ progress and examining the affective elements relevant to their writing. To facilitate future discussion of these phenomena, McLeod also provides suggested definitions for terms in the affective domain.

In a very real sense, this book is the result of a collaboration of three Susans: Susan McLeod, who researched and wrote the book; Sue Hallett, an instructor in Washington State University’s composition program whose classes McLeod observed and who helped provide much of the data; and Susan Parker, a graduate student who observed Hallett’s class and who ran a tutorial connected to that class. To provide a narrative structure, McLeod and her two collaborators have constructed a simulated semester, conflating the year and a half of the study into one semester and creating a class that is a composite drawn from seven classrooms over three semesters.

Although philosophers have had much to say about the affective domain, Notes on the Heart is based for the most part on research from the social sciences. Discussions of pedagogy, while meant to have practical value, are suggestive rather than prescriptive. The goal is to help teachers see their practice in new way.

Teachers will be particularly interested in McLeod’s discussion of teacher affect/effect. This section examines both the issue of the "Pygmalion effect" (students becoming better because the teacher believes they are) and perhaps the more common opposite, the "golem effect" (students becoming less capable because their teachers view them that way).

[more]

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On Emotional Presentation
Alexius Meinong, translated from the German by Marie-Luise Schubert Kalsi and with a new foreword by John J. Drummond
Northwestern University Press, 2020
On Emotional Presentation, first published in German in 1917, contains the Austrian philosopher Alexius Meinong’s clearest and most developed account of the emotions and their relation to values. In this work, written toward the end of his life, Meinong argues that values are given in and through emotions but are also ontologically independent of these emotions or any subjective attitude.

Available again in English, with a new foreword by John J. Drummond that situates Meinong’s account within contemporary discussions of the emotions, this translation will be welcome to those interested in Meinong and his theory of objects as well as those interested in the philosophy of the emotions and values.
[more]

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Orgies of Feeling
Melodrama and the Politics of Freedom
Elisabeth R. Anker
Duke University Press, 2014
Melodrama is not just a film or literary genre but a powerful political discourse that galvanizes national sentiment to legitimate state violence. Finding virtue in national suffering and heroism in sovereign action, melodramatic political discourses cast war and surveillance as moral imperatives for eradicating villainy and upholding freedom. In Orgies of Feeling, Elisabeth R. Anker boldly reframes political theories of sovereignty, freedom, and power by analyzing the work of melodrama and affect in contemporary politics. Arguing that melodrama animates desires for unconstrained power, Anker examines melodramatic discourses in the War on Terror, neoliberal politics, anticommunist rhetoric, Hollywood film, and post-Marxist critical theory. Building on Friedrich Nietzsche's notion of "orgies of feeling," in which overwhelming emotions displace commonplace experiences of vulnerability and powerlessness onto a dramatic story of injured freedom, Anker contends that the recent upsurge in melodrama in the United States is an indication of public discontent. Yet the discontent that melodrama reflects is ultimately an expression of the public's inability to overcome systemic exploitation and inequality rather than an alarmist response to inflated threats to the nation.
 
[more]

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Osiris, Volume 31
History of Science and the Emotions
Edited by Otniel E. Dror, Bettina Hitzer, Anja Laukötter, and Pilar León-Sanz
University of Chicago Press Journals, 2016
What new insights become available for historians when emotions are included as an analytical category? This volume of Osiris explores the historical interrelationships between science and its cultures and cultures of emotions. It argues that a dialogue between the history of emotions and the history of science leads to a rethinking of our categories of analysis, our subjects, and our periodizations. The ten case studies in the volume explore these possibilities and interrelationships across North America and Europe, between the twelfth and the twentieth centuries, in a variety of scientific disciplines. They analyze how scientific communities approached and explained the functions of emotions; how the concomitant positioning of emotions in or between body-mind-intersubjectivity took place; how emotions infused practices and how practices generated emotions; and, ultimately, how new and emerging identities of and criteria for emotions created new knowledge, new technologies, and new subjectivities.
[more]

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Out of My Skull
The Psychology of Boredom
James Danckert and John D. Eastwood
Harvard University Press, 2020

A Behavioral Scientist Notable Book of the Year
A Guardian “Best Book about Ideas” of the Year


No one likes to be bored. Two leading psychologists explain what causes boredom and how to listen to what it is telling you, so you can live a more engaged life.

We avoid boredom at all costs. It makes us feel restless and agitated. Desperate for something to do, we play games on our phones, retie our shoes, or even count ceiling tiles. And if we escape it this time, eventually it will strike again. But what if we listened to boredom instead of banishing it?

Psychologists James Danckert and John Eastwood contend that boredom isn’t bad for us. It’s just that we do a bad job of heeding its guidance. When we’re bored, our minds are telling us that whatever we are doing isn’t working—we’re failing to satisfy our basic psychological need to be engaged and effective. Too many of us respond poorly. We become prone to accidents, risky activities, loneliness, and ennui, and we waste ever more time on technological distractions. But, Danckert and Eastwood argue, we can let boredom have the opposite effect, motivating the change we need. The latest research suggests that an adaptive approach to boredom will help us avoid its troubling effects and, through its reminder to become aware and involved, might lead us to live fuller lives.

Out of My Skull combines scientific findings with everyday observations to explain an experience we’d like to ignore, but from which we have a lot to learn. Boredom evolved to help us. It’s time we gave it a chance.

[more]

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Paranoia
A Novel
Victor Martinovich
Northwestern University Press, 2013

Immediately banned after it was published, Paranoia is a novel about how dictatorships survive by burrowing into the minds of those they rule, sowing distrust and blurring the boundaries between the state’s and the individual’s autonomy. Although Minsk and Belarus are never mentioned, they are clearly the author’s inspiration for the novel’s setting. The plot focuses on a doomed romance between a young man whose former lover has disappeared and a young woman whose other lover is the minister of state security. The novel evokes classic dissident literature while artfully depicting the post-Soviet, globalized world.

 
[more]

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Passionate Politics
Emotions and Social Movements
Edited by Jeff Goodwin, James M. Jasper, and Francesca Polletta
University of Chicago Press, 2001
Emotions are back. Once at the center of the study of politics, emotions have receded into the shadows during the past three decades, with no place in the rationalistic, structural, and organizational models that dominate academic political analysis.

With this new collection of essays, Jeff Goodwin, James M. Jasper, and Francesca Polletta reverse this trend, reincorporating emotions such as anger, indignation, fear, disgust, joy, and love into research on politics and social protest. The tools of cultural analysis are especially useful for probing the role of emotions in politics, the editors and contributors to Passionate Politics argue. Moral outrage, the shame of spoiled collective identities, or the joy of imagining a new and better society, are not automatic responses to events. Rather, they are related to moral institutions, felt obligations and rights, and information about expected effects, all of which are culturally and historically variable.

With its look at the history of emotions in social thought, examination of the internal dynamics of protest groups, and exploration of the emotional dynamics that arise from interactions and conflicts among political factions and individuals, Passionate Politics will lead the way toward an overdue reconsideration of the role of emotions in social movements and politics generally.

Contributors:
Rebecca Anne Allahyari
Edwin Amenta
Collin Barker
Mabel Berezin
Craig Calhoun
Randall Collins
Frank Dobbin
Jeff Goodwin
Deborah B. Gould
Julian McAllister Groves
James M. Jasper
Anne Kane
Theodore D. Kemper
Sharon Erickson Nepstad
Steven Pfaff
Francesca Polletta
Christian Smith
Arlene Stein
Nancy Whittier
Elisabeth Jean Wood
Michael P. Young
[more]

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Passions and Virtue
Servais Pinckaers
Catholic University of America Press, 2015
This book, the last that noted moral theologian Servais Pinckaers, OP, wrote before his death, was conceived as a follow-up to his previous work Plaidoyer pour la vertu (An Appeal for Virtue) (2007) Pinckaers' aim in Passions and Virtue was to show the positive and essential role that our emotions play in the life of virtue. His purpose is part of a larger project of renewing moral theology, a theology too often experienced as an ethics of obligation rather than as a practical guide to living virtuously. To this end, Pinckaers sketches a positive psychology of the passions as found in the biblical tradition, in the writings of the Fathers of the Church, in pagan authors and, especially, in the writings of Saint Thomas Aquinas.
[more]

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The Performer-Audience Connection
Emotion to Metaphor in Dance and Society
By Judith Lynne Hanna
University of Texas Press, 1983

The Performer-Audience Connection is a pioneering foray into one of the major puzzles of human communication: the communication of emotion in dance. It is the first attempt of its kind systematically to investigate what performers wish to convey and what audiences perceive in the performance of dance.

The centerpiece of this provocative book is an examination of performer intentions and audience response at eight dance performances in Washington, D.C. Part of the Smithsonian Institution Division of Performing Arts Dance Series, these concerts featured a variety of dance genres and cultures: American tap dance, Kathakali dance-drama from Kerala, India, Japanese Kabuki, contemporary avant-garde dance, Philippine folk dance, the Indian classical tradition of Kuchipudi, and modern dance to an AfroAmerican spiritual.

How did dancer and audience interact at the emotional level on these eight occasions? What affected performer-audience rapport? Through interviews of both spectators and dancers, Judith Lynne Hanna explores the performers' ways of imparting emotion through movement and audience members' expectations and responses. In doing so she casts new light on important issues of cultural identity, sex role, historic attitudes toward dance, and even marketing the arts today.

A landmark work not only for performers who wish to reach their audiences more effectively but also for choreographers, anthropologists, specialists in nonverbal communication, behavioral scientists, educators, and all who are fascinated by the arts and the special magic of the "performer-audience connection."

[more]

front cover of Philosophical psychology
Philosophical psychology
psychology, emotions, and freedom
Craig Steven Titus
Catholic University of America Press, 2009

front cover of Plato's Moral Realism
Plato's Moral Realism
The Discovery of the Presuppositions of Ethics
John M. Rist
Catholic University of America Press, 2012
Surveying many of Plato's dialogues from the early, middle, and late periods, prominent philosopher John M. Rist shows how Plato gradually came to realize the need for metaphysics to support his ethical position and that a rigorous ethics required a secure metaphysics grounded in universal values.
[more]

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Political Emotions
Why Love Matters for Justice
Martha C. Nussbaum
Harvard University Press, 2013

How can we achieve and sustain a "decent" liberal society, one that aspires to justice and equal opportunity for all and inspires individuals to sacrifice for the common good? In this book, a continuation of her explorations of emotions and the nature of social justice, Martha Nussbaum makes the case for love. Amid the fears, resentments, and competitive concerns that are endemic even to good societies, public emotions rooted in love—in intense attachments to things outside our control—can foster commitment to shared goals and keep at bay the forces of disgust and envy.

Great democratic leaders, including Abraham Lincoln, Mohandas Gandhi, and Martin Luther King Jr., have understood the importance of cultivating emotions. But people attached to liberalism sometimes assume that a theory of public sentiments would run afoul of commitments to freedom and autonomy. Calling into question this perspective, Nussbaum investigates historical proposals for a public "civil religion" or "religion of humanity" by Jean-Jacques Rousseau, Auguste Comte, John Stuart Mill, and Rabindranath Tagore. She offers an account of how a decent society can use resources inherent in human psychology, while limiting the damage done by the darker side of our personalities. And finally she explores the cultivation of emotions that support justice in examples drawn from literature, song, political rhetoric, festivals, memorials, and even the design of public parks.

"Love is what gives respect for humanity its life," Nussbaum writes, "making it more than a shell." Political Emotionsis a challenging and ambitious contribution to political philosophy.

[more]

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Politics of Emotion/Power of Affect
Edited by Susanne Witzgall and Marietta Kesting
Diaphanes, 2021
In the past decade the relevance of emotion and affect in societal dynamics and power relations has increasingly become the focus for scientists and artists. Across disciplines they are breaking down the opposition of cognition and feeling, and emphasizing the central meaning of emotions and affective atmospheres for personal judgement, decision-making and the realm of politics. The present publication can be seen as an enhancing contribution to these discourses. It particularly focusses on artistic positions, which are brought into dialogue with philosophical, gender-theoretical or neuro- and social-scientific approaches. It addresses the ambivalent political dimensions of anxiety, hope, and empathy, as well as the relationship between emotion and habit or the power of (media-)technical affective processes. The publication is the result of the sixth annual programme of the cx centre for interdisciplinary studies of the Academy of Fine Arts Munich.

With contributions by Marie-Luise Angerer, Ben Anderson, Jace Clayton, Keren Cytter, Antonio Damasio, Cécile B. Evans, Karianne Fogelberg, Deborah Gould, Susanna Hertrich, Serhat Karakayali, Marietta Kesting, Carolyn Pedwell, and Susanne Witzgall.
[more]

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Reading with Feeling
Affect Theory and the Bible
Fiona C. Black
SBL Press, 2019

Essays with a methodological and metacritical focus

The psychological approach known as affect theory focuses on bodily feelings—depression, happiness, disgust, love—and can illuminate both texts and their interpretations. In this collection of essays scholars break new ground in biblical interpretation by deploying a range of affect-theoretical approaches in their interpretations of texts. Contributors direct their attention to the political, social, and cultural formation of emotion and other precognitive forces as a corrective to more traditional historical-critical methods and postmodern approaches. The inclusion of response essays results in a rich transdisciplinary dialog, with, for example, history, classics, and philosophy. Fiona C. Black, Amy C. Cottrill, Rhiannon Graybill, Jennifer L. Koosed, Joseph Marchal, Robert Seesengood, Ken Stone, and Jay Twomey engage a range of texts from biblical, to prayers, to graphic novels. Erin Runions and Stephen D. Moore’s responses push the conversation in new fruitful directions.

Features

  • An overview of the development of affect theory and how it has been used to interpret biblical texts
  • Examples of how to apply affect theory to biblical exegesis
  • Interdisciplinary studies that engage history, literature, classics, animal studies, liturgical studies, philosophy, and sociology
[more]

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The Reformation of Emotions in the Age of Shakespeare
Steven Mullaney
University of Chicago Press, 2015
The crises of faith that fractured Reformation Europe also caused crises of individual and collective identity. Structures of feeling as well as structures of belief were transformed; there was a reformation of social emotions as well as a Reformation of faith.

As Steven Mullaney shows in The Reformation of Emotions in the Age of Shakespeare, Elizabethan popular drama played a significant role in confronting the uncertainties and unresolved traumas of Elizabethan Protestant England. Shakespeare and his contemporaries—audiences as well as playwrights—reshaped popular drama into a new form of embodied social, critical, and affective thought. Examining a variety of works, from revenge plays to Shakespeare’s first history tetralogy and beyond, Mullaney explores how post-Reformation drama not only exposed these faultlines of society on stage but also provoked playgoers in the audience to acknowledge their shared differences. He demonstrates that our most lasting works of culture remain powerful largely because of their deep roots in the emotional landscape of their times.
[more]

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Science and Emotions after 1945
A Transatlantic Perspective
Edited by Frank Biess and Daniel M. Gross
University of Chicago Press, 2014
Through the first half of the twentieth century, emotions were a legitimate object of scientific study across a variety of disciplines. After 1945, however, in the wake of Nazi irrationalism, emotions became increasingly marginalized and postwar rationalism took central stage. Emotion remained on the scene of scientific and popular study but largely at the fringes as a behavioral reflex, or as a concern of the private sphere. So why, by the 1960s, had the study of emotions returned to the forefront of academic investigation?

In Science and Emotions after 1945, Frank Biess and Daniel M. Gross chronicle the curious resurgence of emotion studies and show that it was fueled by two very different sources: social movements of the 1960s and brain science. A central claim of the book is that the relatively recent neuroscientific study of emotion did not initiate – but instead consolidated – the emotional turn by clearing the ground for multidisciplinary work on the emotions. Science and Emotions after 1945 tells the story of this shift by looking closely at scientific disciplines in which the study of emotions has featured prominently, including medicine, psychiatry, neuroscience, and the social sciences, viewed in each case from a humanities perspective.
[more]

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The Science of Shame and Its Treatment
Gerald Loren Fishkin, Ph.D.
Parkhurst Brothers, Inc., 2016
Shame is the ghost in the machine of the human mind.  It can implant itself in the psyche before the first word is spoken, even before the first thought has formed.  In his groundbreaking book, The Science of Shame and Its Treatment, psychotherapist and author Gerald Loren Fishkin, Ph.D., addresses the genesis of shame and self-talk from an empirical analysis of their core elements, its insidious ingress into conscious thought, and the havoc it inflicts on a person’s self-worth and behavior.

Through his empirical analysis and understanding of toxic shame, Dr. Fishkin has identified multiple effective clinical approaches for its treatment and addressing shame-based behaviors.  He clearly outlines why contemporary treatment approaches, including cognitive behavioral therapy, do not treat core shame wounds and most often cause individuals to terminate the therapeutic process prematurely.
This book is a must-read for clinicians, addiction specialists, teachers, students of human behavior, counselors, social workers, patients in treatment.
[more]

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The Secret History of Emotion
From Aristotle's Rhetoric to Modern Brain Science
Daniel M. Gross
University of Chicago Press, 2006
Princess Diana’s death was a tragedy that provoked mourning across the globe; the death of a homeless person, more often than not, is met with apathy. How can we account for this uneven distribution of emotion? Can it simply be explained by the prevailing scientific understanding? Uncovering a rich tradition beginning with Aristotle, The Secret History of Emotion offers a counterpoint to the way we generally understand emotions today.
 
Through a radical rereading of Aristotle, Seneca, Thomas Hobbes, Sarah Fielding, and Judith Butler, among others, Daniel M. Gross reveals a persistent intellectual current that considers emotions as psychosocial phenomena. In Gross’s historical analysis of emotion, Aristotle and Hobbes’s rhetoric show that our passions do not stem from some inherent, universal nature of men and women, but rather are conditioned by power relations and social hierarchies. He follows up with consideration of how political passions are distributed to some people but not to others using the Roman Stoics as a guide. Hume and contemporary theorists like Judith Butler, meanwhile, explain to us how psyches are shaped by power. To supplement his argument, Gross also provides a history and critique of the dominant modern view of emotions, expressed in Darwinism and neurobiology, in which they are considered organic, personal feelings independent of social circumstances.
 
The result is a convincing work that rescues the study of the passions from science and returns it to the humanities and the art of rhetoric.

[more]

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Shame and Its Sisters
A Silvan Tomkins Reader
Eve Kosofsky Sedgwick and Adam Frank, eds.
Duke University Press, 1995
The question of affect is central to critical theory, psychology, politics, and the entire range of the humanities; but no discipline, including psychoanalysis, has offered a theory of affect that would be rich enough to account for the delicacy and power, the evanescence and durability, the bodily rootedness and the cultural variability of human emotion.

Silvan Tomkins (1911–1991) was one of the most radical and imaginative psychologists of the twentieth century. In Affect, Imagery, Consciousness, a four-volume work published over the last thirty years of his life, Tomkins developed an ambitious theory of affect steeped in cybernetics and systems theory as well as in psychoanalysis, ethology, and neuroscience. The implications of his conceptually daring and phenomenologically suggestive theory are only now—in the context of postmodernism—beginning to be understood. With Shame and Its Sisters, editors Eve Kosofsky Sedgwick and Adam Frank make available for the first time an engaging and accessible selection of Tomkins’s work.
Featuring intensive examination of several key affects, particularly shame and anger, this volume contains many of Tomkins’s most haunting, diagnostically incisive, and theoretically challenging discussions. An introductory essay by the editors places Tomkins’s work in the context of postwar information technologies and will prompt a reexamination of some of the underlying assumptions of recent critical work in cultural studies and other areas of the humanities. The text is also accompanied by a biographical sketch of Tomkins by noted psychologist Irving E. Alexander, Tomkins’s longtime friend and collaborator.

[more]

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A Silvan Tomkins Handbook
Foundations for Affect Theory
Adam J. Frank
University of Minnesota Press, 2020

An accessible guide to the work of American psychologist and affect theorist Silvan Tomkins

 

The brilliant and complex theories of psychologist Silvan Tomkins (1911–1991) have inspired the turn to affect in the humanities, social sciences, and elsewhere. Nevertheless, these theories are not well understood. A Silvan Tomkins Handbook makes his theories portable across a range of interdisciplinary contexts and accessible to a wide variety of contemporary scholars and students of affect. 

A Silvan Tomkins Handbook provides readers with a clear outline of Tomkins’s affect theory as he developed it in his four-volume masterwork Affect Imagery Consciousness. It shows how his key terms and conceptual innovations can be used to build robust frameworks for theorizing affect and emotion. In addition to clarifying his affect theory, the Handbook emphasizes Tomkins’s other significant contributions, from his broad theories of imagery and consciousness to more focused concepts of scenes and scripts. With their extensive experience engaging and teaching Tomkins’s work, Adam J. Frank and Elizabeth A. Wilson provide a user-friendly guide for readers who want to know more about the foundations of affect studies.

[more]

front cover of Snakes, Sunrises, and Shakespeare
Snakes, Sunrises, and Shakespeare
How Evolution Shapes Our Loves and Fears
Gordon H. Orians
University of Chicago Press, 2014
Our breath catches and we jump in fear at the sight of a snake. We pause and marvel at the sublime beauty of a sunrise. These reactions are no accident; in fact, many of our human responses to nature are steeped in our deep evolutionary past—we fear snakes because of the danger of venom or constriction, and we welcome the assurances of the sunrise as the predatory dangers of the dark night disappear. Many of our aesthetic preferences—from the kinds of gardens we build to the foods we enjoy and the entertainment we seek—are the lingering result of natural selection.

In this ambitious and unusual work, evolutionary biologist Gordon H. Orians explores the role of evolution in human responses to the environment, beginning with why we have emotions and ending with evolutionary approaches to aesthetics. Orians reveals how our emotional lives today are shaped by decisions our ancestors made centuries ago on African savannas as they selected places to live, sought food and safety, and socialized in small hunter-gatherer groups.  During this time our likes and dislikes became wired in our brains, as the appropriate responses to the environment meant the difference between survival or death. His rich analysis explains why we mimic the tropical savannas of our ancestors in our parks and gardens, why we are simultaneously attracted to danger and approach it cautiously, and how paying close attention to nature’s sounds has resulted in us being an unusually musical species.  We also learn why we have developed discriminating palates for wine, and why we have strong reactions to some odors, and why we enjoy classifying almost everything.

By applying biological perspectives ranging from Darwin to current neuroscience to analyses of our aesthetic preferences for landscapes, sounds, smells, plants, and animals, Snakes, Sunrises, and Shakespeare transforms how we view our experience of the natural world and how we relate to each other.
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Sound Diplomacy
Music and Emotions in Transatlantic Relations, 1850-1920
Jessica C. E. Gienow-Hecht
University of Chicago Press, 2009
The German-American relationship was special long before the Cold War; it was rooted not simply in political actions, but also long-term traditions of cultural exchange that date back to the nineteenth century. Between 1850 and 1910, the United States was a rising star in the international arena, and several European nations sought to strengthen their ties to the republic by championing their own cultures in America. While France capitalized on its art and Britain on its social ties and literature, Germany promoted its particular breed of classical music.
Delving into a treasure trove of archives that document cross-cultural interactions between America and Germany, Jessica Gienow-Hecht retraces these efforts to export culture as an instrument of nongovernmental diplomacy, paying particular attention to the role of conductors, and uncovers the remarkable history of the musician as a cultural symbol of German cosmopolitanism. Considered sexually attractive and emotionally expressive, German players and conductors acted as an army of informal ambassadors for their home country, and Gienow-Hecht argues that their popularity in the United States paved the way for an emotional elective affinity that survived broken treaties and several wars and continues to the present.
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Statistical Panic
Cultural Politics and Poetics of the Emotions
Kathleen Woodward
Duke University Press, 2009
In this moving and thoughtful book, Kathleen Woodward explores the politics and poetics of the emotions, focusing on American culture since the 1960s. She argues that we are constrained in terms of gender, race, and age by our culture’s scripts for “emotional” behavior and that the accelerating impoverishment of interiority is a symptom of our increasingly media-saturated culture. She also shows how we can be empowered by stories that express our experience, revealing the value of our emotions as a crucial form of intelligence.

Referring discreetly to her own experience, Woodward examines the interpenetration of social structures and subjectivity, considering how psychological emotions are social phenomena, with feminist anger, racial shame, old-age depression, and sympathy for non-human cyborgs (including robots) as key cases in point. She discusses how emerging institutional and discursive structures engender “new” affects that in turn can help us understand our changing world if we are attentive to them—the “statistical panic” produced by the risk society, with its numerical portents of disease and mortality; the rage prompted by impenetrable and bloated bureaucracies; the brutal shame experienced by those caught in the crossfire of the media; and the conservative compassion that is not an emotion at all, only an empty political slogan.

The orbit of Statistical Panic is wide, drawing in feminist theory, critical phenomenology, and recent theories of the emotions. But at its heart are stories. As an antidote to the vacuous dramas of media culture, with its mock emotions and scattershot sensations, Woodward turns to the autobiographical narrative. Stories of illness—by Joan Didion, Yvonne Rainer, Paul Monette, and Alice Wexler, among others—receive special attention, with the inexhaustible emotion of grief framing the book as a whole.

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Stoicism and Emotion
Margaret Graver
University of Chicago Press, 2007
On the surface, stoicism and emotion seem like contradictory terms. Yet the Stoic philosophers of ancient Greece and Rome were deeply interested in the emotions, which they understood as complex judgments about what we regard as valuable in our surroundings. Stoicism and Emotion shows that they did not simply advocate an across-the-board suppression of feeling, as stoicism implies in today’s English, but instead conducted a searching examination of these powerful psychological responses, seeking to understand what attitude toward them expresses the deepest respect for human potential.

In this elegant and clearly written work, Margaret Graver gives a compelling new interpretation of the Stoic position. Drawing on a vast range of ancient sources, she argues that the chief demand of Stoic ethics is not that we should suppress or deny our feelings, but that we should perfect the rational mind at the core of every human being. Like all our judgments, the Stoics believed, our affective responses can be either true or false and right or wrong, and we must assume responsibility for them. Without glossing over the difficulties, Graver also shows how the Stoics dealt with those questions that seem to present problems for their theory: the physiological basis of affective responses, the phenomenon of being carried away by one’s emotions, the occurrence of involuntary feelings and the disordered behaviors of mental illness. Ultimately revealing the deeper motivations of Stoic philosophy, Stoicism and Emotion uncovers the sources of its broad appeal in the ancient world and illuminates its surprising relevance to our own.
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front cover of Theorizing Emotions
Theorizing Emotions
Sociological Explorations and Applications
Edited by Debra Hopkins, Jochen Kleres, Helena Flam, and Helmut Kuzmics
Campus Verlag, 2009

Theorizing Emotions reflects the recent turn to emotions in academia—not just in sociology but also in psychology, evolutionary biology, and neuroscience. Drawing on the classic studies of Max Weber, Erving Goffman, and Norbert Elias, several leading European scholars present their findings on the role of emotions in various facets of society, from the laboratory to the office to the media. Among the topics discussed are the tensions between feelings and feeling rules, the conscious and unconscious emotions of scientists, emotions and social disorder, the effect of the emotional turn as an element of advancing modernity, romantic love in U.S. and Israeli codes of conduct, and the role of mass media in generating massive public emotions.

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Time of Anarchy
Indigenous Power and the Crisis of Colonialism in Early America
Matthew Kruer
Harvard University Press, 2021

A gripping account of the violence and turmoil that engulfed England’s fledgling colonies and the crucial role played by Native Americans in determining the future of North America.

In 1675, eastern North America descended into chaos. Virginia exploded into civil war, as rebel colonists decried the corruption of planter oligarchs and massacred allied Indians. Maryland colonists, gripped by fears that Catholics were conspiring with enemy Indians, rose up against their rulers. Separatist movements and ethnic riots swept through New York and New Jersey. Dissidents in northern Carolina launched a revolution, proclaiming themselves independent of any authority but their own. English America teetered on the edge of anarchy.

Though seemingly distinct, these conflicts were in fact connected through the Susquehannock Indians, a once-mighty nation reduced to a small remnant. Forced to scatter by colonial militia, Susquehannock bands called upon connections with Indigenous nations from the Great Lakes to the Deep South, mobilizing sources of power that colonists could barely perceive, much less understand. Although the Susquehannock nation seemed weak and divided, it exercised influence wildly disproportionate to its size, often tipping settler societies into chaos. Colonial anarchy was intertwined with Indigenous power.

Piecing together Susquehannock strategies from a wide range of archival documents and material evidence, Matthew Kruer shows how one people’s struggle for survival and renewal changed the shape of eastern North America. Susquehannock actions rocked the foundations of the fledging English territories, forcing colonial societies and governments to respond. Time of Anarchy recasts our understanding of the late seventeenth century and places Indigenous power at the heart of the story.

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front cover of Unnatural Emotions
Unnatural Emotions
Everyday Sentiments on a Micronesian Atoll and Their Challenge to Western Theory
Catherine A. Lutz
University of Chicago Press, 1988
"An outstanding contribution to psychological anthropology. Its excellent ethnography and its provocative theory make it essential reading for all those concerned with the understanding of human emotions."—Karl G. Heider, American Anthropologist
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front cover of What Emotions Really Are
What Emotions Really Are
The Problem of Psychological Categories
Paul E. Griffiths
University of Chicago Press, 1997
In this provocative contribution to the philosophy of science and mind, Paul E. Griffiths criticizes contemporary philosophy and psychology of emotion for failing to take in an evolutionary perspective and address current work in neurobiology and cognitive science. Reviewing the three current models of emotion, Griffiths points out their deficiencies and constructs a basis for future models that pay equal attention to biological fact and conceptual rigor.

"Griffiths has written a work of depth and clarity in an area of murky ambiguity, producing a much-needed standard at the border of science, philosophy, and psychology. . . . As he presents his case, offering a forthright critique of past and present theories, Griffiths touches on such issues as evolution, social construction, natural kinds (categories corresponding with real distinctions in nature), cognition, and moods. While addressing specialists, the book will reward general readers who apply themselves to its remarkably accessible style."—Library Journal

"What Emotions Really Are makes a strong claim to be one of the best books to have emerged on the subject of human emotion."—Ray Dolan, Nature

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