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Like any other valued resource, emotions are distributed unequally. Moreover, emotions are a generalized resource because they give people the confidence, or lack of confidence, to secure additional types of resources. Thus, this distribution of emotions roughly corresponds to the shares of others kinds of resources that members of various social classes possess. The level of positive and negative emotional energy evident among members of different social classes has large consequences for the viability of human societies. When a large majority of members in diverse social classes have reservoirs of positive emotional energy, these emotions work to legitimate macrostructures and to build people’s commitments to societies. When, however, significant numbers of persons in lower social classes, and at times in middle to upper social classes as well, reveal reservoirs of negative emotional energy, they are likely to de-legitimate key institutional systems and, under specifiable conditions, mobilize collective—often with violent outcomes. Thus, emotions are at the core of both integrative and disintegrative forces in societies, and when large reservoirs of negative emotional energy exist, they pose a problem for societies. The goal of this new, unique Series is to offer readable, teachable "thinking frames" on today’s social problems and social issues by leading scholars, all in short 60 page or shorter formats, and available for view on http://routledge.customgateway.com/routledge-social-issues.html For instructors teaching a wide range of courses in the social sciences, the Routledge Social Issues Collection now offers the best of both worlds: originally written short texts that provide "overviews" to important social issues as well as teachable excerpts from larger works previously published by Routledge and other presses.
Martha Nussbaum asks: How can we sustain a decent society that aspires to justice and inspires sacrifice for the common good? Amid negative emotions endemic even to good societies, public emotions rooted in love--intense attachments outside our control--can foster commitment to shared goals and keep at bay the forces of disgust and envy.
This edited collection takes a critical perspective on Norbert Elias’s theory of the "civilizing process," through historical essays and contemporary analysis from sociologists and cultural theorists. It focuses on changes in emotional regimes or styles and considers the intersection of emotions and social change, historically and contemporaneously. The book is set in the context of increasing interest among humanities and social science scholars in reconsidering the significance of emotion and affect in society, and the development of empirical research and theorizing around these subjects. Some have labeled this interest as an "affective turn" or a "turn to affect," which suggests a profound and wide-ranging reshaping of disciplines. Building upon complex theoretical models of emotions and social change, the chapters exemplify this shift in analysis of emotions and affect, and suggest different approaches to investigation which may help to shape the direction of sociological and historical thinking and research.
Those who address conflict resulting from differing socio-economic groups (stratification systems) focus on the arousal of negative emotions. Less frequently explored are the effects of positive emotions, particularly among the middle classes in industrial and post-industrial societies. In more developed societies, those experiencing positive emotional energy far outnumber those who endure negative emotions. Jonathan H. Turner sees the distribution of positive and negative emotions in developed societies as another basis for grouping people into socio-economic classifications. Such distribution explains the commitments of middle classes to the system and the lack of class-based social movements from lower classes. Turner argues for Marx’s theory—when a population’s vast majority is consistently experiencing negative emotions, the potential for revolution within society increases. Turner explains why class-conflict potential is low in developed societies and how it might increase if the middle classes lose their share of resources. He notes the beginnings of this shift, but says that the overall positive emotions of the middle class have not yet transitioned from positive to negative. Capitalism will persist, but it will be a reformed capitalism, especially in the United States, as taxes and regulation by government assure higher levels of resource redistribution to members of a society.
From diverse theoretical positions--symbolic interactionist, social constructionist, feminist, positivist, linguistic, phenomenologist, Marxist, and evolutionist--contributors set forth their current understandings, as well as the directions of future work, with a discussion of the most significant problems in emotions research. Paper edition (unseen), $18.95. Annotation copyrighted by Book News, Inc., Portland, OR
There have been some major transformations in Indian society over the past twenty to thirty years. With this change have come enormous opportunities for the local people to experience a higher standard of living. Personal relationships in India have also changed greatly over the same period there have been some very positive changes and changes that are not so good. They have taken on many of the characteristics of those in the Western world. The book looks at Indian relationships, and changes that have taken place, and outlines habits that have worked in the author s own marriage which can be applied to any personal relationship. Studies and research on what are good and bad relationships have been conducted in the West for many years and there are many good ideas for making relationships work. It is hoped what is in this book will put the reader on the way to a great and happy relationship.
Taking as its point of departure recent developments in health and social theory Health, Medicine and Society brings together a range of eminent, international scholars to reflect upon key issues at the turn of the century. Contributors draw upon a range of contemporary theories, both modernist and postmodernist, to look at the following themes: *health and social structure *the contested nature of the body *the salience of consumption and risk *the challenge of emotions Health, Medicine and Society provides a 'state-of-the-art' assessment of health related issues at the millennium and a cogent set of arguments for the centrality of health to contemporary social theory. Written in a clear, accessible style it will be ideal reading for students and researchers in health studies, public health, medical sociology, medicine and nursing.
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