front cover of Aquinas on Emotion's Participation in Reason
Aquinas on Emotion's Participation in Reason
Nicholas Kahm
Catholic University of America Press, 2019
Aquinas on Emotion’s Participation in Reason aims to present Aquinas’s answer to the perennial and now popular question: In what way can the emotions be rational? For Aquinas, the starting point of this inquiry is Aristotle’s claim (EN. I. 13) that there are three parts to the soul: 1) the rational part, 2) the non-rational part which can participate in reason, and 3) the non-rational part that does not participate in reason. It is the extent to which the second part (the sense appetites, the seat of the emotions) participates in reason that the emotions can become rational. However, immediately after Aristotle introduces his tripartite division of the soul, he warns that one need not delve into the details of the division or the participation. Aquinas, however, ignores Aristotle, and uses his precise metaphysics of participation within in his sophisticated anthropology to great effect in his ethics. Unlike Aristotle, to fully understand Aquinas’s thinking on how the emotions can become rational, we simply must delve into the kinds of precisions that Aristotle thinks are misplaced. When Aquinas’s views emerge from these precisions, he has a surprisingly level-headed and commonsense view of how the emotions can become rational. On this point, he is more pessimistic than Aristotle and more optimistic than Kant; he is certainly not, as is he is often thought to be, the faithful follower of Aristotle and the polar opposite of Kant. Nicholas Kahm argue that Aquinas has a realistic and plausible view of how far reason can go in shaping our emotions. Furthermore, his plausible views can accommodate the serious current challenge raised against virtue ethics from social psychology. The method has mainly been a careful reading of primary texts, but unlike the rest of the scholarship on Aquinas’s ethics, Kahm is particularly sensitive to Aquinas’s historical and philosophical development.

front cover of Feeling in Theory
Feeling in Theory
Emotion after the "Death of the Subject"
Rei Terada
Harvard University Press, 2001

Because emotion is assumed to depend on subjectivity, the "death of the subject" described in recent years by theorists such as Derrida, de Man, and Deleuze would also seem to mean the death of feeling. This revolutionary work transforms the burgeoning interdisciplinary debate on emotion by suggesting, instead, a positive relation between the "death of the subject" and the very existence of emotion.

Reading the writings of Derrida and de Man--theorists often seen as emotionally contradictory and cold--Terada finds grounds for construing emotion as nonsubjective. This project offers fresh interpretations of deconstruction's most important texts, and of Continental and Anglo-American philosophers from Descartes to Deleuze and Dennett. At the same time, it revitalizes poststructuralist theory by deploying its methodologies in a new field, the philosophy of emotion, to reach a startling conclusion: if we really were subjects, we would have no emotions at all.

Engaging debates in philosophy, literary criticism, psychology, and cognitive science from a poststructuralist and deconstructive perspective, Terada's work is essential for the renewal of critical thought in our day.


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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.

front cover of On Feeling, Knowing, and Valuing
On Feeling, Knowing, and Valuing
Selected Writings
Max Scheler
University of Chicago Press, 1992
One of the pioneers of modern sociology, Max Scheler (1874-
1928) ranks with Max Weber, Edmund Husserl, and Ernst
Troeltsch as being among the most brilliant minds of his
generation. Yet Scheler is now known chiefly for his
philosophy of religion, despite his groundbreaking work in
the sociology of knowledge, the sociology of emotions, and
phenomenological sociology. This volume comprises some of
Scheler's most interesting work—including an analysis of the
role of sentiments in social interaction, a sociology of
knowledge rooted in global social and cultural comparisons,
and a cross-cultural theory of values—and identifies some of
his important contributions to the discussion of issues at
the forefront of the social sciences today.

Editor Harold J. Bershady provides a richly detailed
biographical portrait of Scheler, as well as an incisive
analysis of how his work extends and integrates problems of
theory and method addressed by Durkheim, Weber, and Parsons,
among others.

Harold J. Bershady, professor of sociology at the University
of Pennsylvania, is the author of Ideology and Social
Knowledge and the editor of Social Class and
Democratic Leadership.

Heritage of Sociology series

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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.


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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.


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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.

front cover of Tropes of Transport
Tropes of Transport
Hegel and Emotion
Katrin Pahl
Northwestern University Press, 2012

Intervening in the multidisciplinary debate on emotion, Tropes of Transport offers a fresh analysis of Hegel’s work that becomes an important resource for Pahl’s cutting-edge theory of emotionality. If it is usually assumed that the sincerity of emotions and the force of affects depend on their immediacy, Pahl explores to what extent mediation—and therefore a certain degree of manipulation but also of sympathy—is constitutive of emotionality. Hegel serves as a particularly helpful interlocutor not only because he offers a sophisticated analysis of mediation, but also because, rather than locating emotion in the heart, he introduces impersonal tropes of transport, such as trembling, release, and shattering.


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Turning Emotion Inside Out
Affective Life beyond the Subject
Edward S. Casey
Northwestern University Press, 2022
In Turning Emotion Inside Out, Edward S. Casey challenges the commonplace assumption that our emotions are to be located inside our minds, brains, hearts, or bodies. Instead, he invites us to rethink our emotions as fundamentally, although not entirely, emerging from outside and around the self, redirecting our attention from felt interiority to the emotions located in the world around us, beyond the confines of subjectivity.
This book begins with a brief critique of internalist views of emotion that hold that feelings are sequestered within a subject. Casey affirms that while certain emotions are felt as resonating within our subjectivity, many others are experienced as occurring outside any such subjectivity. These include intentional or expressive feelings that transpire between ourselves and others, such as an angry exchange between two people, as well as emotions or affects that come to us from beyond ourselves. Casey claims that such far‑out emotions must be recognized in a full picture of affective life. In this way, the book proposes to “turn emotion inside out.”

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Uncomfortable Situations
Emotion between Science and the Humanities
Daniel M. Gross
University of Chicago Press, 2017
What is a hostile environment? How exactly can feelings be mixed? What on earth might it mean when someone writes that he was “happily situated” as a slave? The answers, of course, depend upon whom you ask.

Science and the humanities typically offer two different paradigms for thinking about emotion—the first rooted in brain and biology, the second in a social world. With rhetoric as a field guide, Uncomfortable Situations establishes common ground between these two paradigms, focusing on a theory of situated emotion. Daniel M. Gross anchors the argument in Charles Darwin, whose work on emotion has been misunderstood across the disciplines as it has been shoehorned into the perceived science-humanities divide. Then Gross turns to sentimental literature as the single best domain for studying emotional situations. There’s lost composure (Sterne), bearing up (Equiano), environmental hostility (Radcliffe), and feeling mixed (Austen). Rounding out the book, an epilogue written with ecological neuroscientist Stephanie Preston provides a different kind of cross-disciplinary collaboration. Uncomfortable Situations is a conciliatory work across science and the humanities—a groundbreaking model for future studies.

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Wild Experiment
Feeling Science and Secularism after Darwin
Donovan O. Schaefer
Duke University Press, 2022
In Wild Experiment, Donovan O. Schaefer challenges the conventional wisdom that feeling and thinking are separate. Drawing on science studies, philosophy, affect theory, secularism studies, psychology, and contemporary literary criticism, Schaefer reconceptualizes rationality as defined by affective processes at every level. He introduces the model of “cogency theory” to reconsider the relationship between evolutionary biology and secularism, examining mid-nineteenth-century Darwinian controversies, the 1925 Scopes Trial, and the New Atheist movement of the 2000s. Along the way, Schaefer reappraises a range of related issues, from secular architecture at Oxford to American eugenics to contemporary climate denialism. These case studies locate the intersection of thinking and feeling in the way scientific rationality balances excited discovery with anxious scrutiny, in the fascination of conspiracy theories, and in how racist feelings assume the mantle of rational objectivity. The fact that cognition is felt, Schaefer demonstrates, is both why science succeeds and why it fails. He concludes that science, secularism, atheism, and reason itself are not separate from feeling but comprehensively defined by it.

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