From Barbara's list on the history of emotions.
This book electrified the field of the history of emotions. It showed how feelings were not just private but also—and essentially—political. Reddy here demonstrates the utility of his notion of “emotional regimes”—the idea that power involves imposing certain emotional norms on everyone. His book argues not only that emotions are a tool of power but also that they may be so misused and ferociously applied that they give rise to rebellions and revolutions—each, in turn, with its own sets of emotional norms.
Why should I read it?
What is this book about?
In The Navigation of Feeling: A Framework for the History of Emotions, William M. Reddy offers a theory of emotions which both critiques and expands upon recent research in the fields of anthropology and psychology. Exploring the links between emotion and cognition, between culture and emotional expression, Reddy applies this theory of emotions to the processes of history. He demonstrates how emotions change over time, how emotions have a very important impact on the course of events, and how different social orders either facilitate or constrain emotional life. In an investigation of Revolutionary France, where sentimentalism in literature and philosophy…