Politics and Emotion

Emotions, it is often said, has no place in politics. Where the former is thought to be primal and unruly, the latter is regarded as the realm of reason, of pragmatic and thoughtful deliberations. But how accurate is such a view? Don’t emotions typically accompany our political judgments and actions? Might they perhaps condition such responses, priming them and orienting us towards certain political attitudes and dispositions? Organized around five emotions—fear, disgust, grief, compassion, and hope— this module explores how emotions circulate within political life, how they emerge and are deployed for the mobilization of identities, sovereign legitimacy, ethical responsibility, and resistance.

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