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WR152: Emotions in Politics

WR152: Emotions in Politics

This guide is designed to help you find sources of background information, exhibitsarguments, and research methods related to the topic of the course and your own interests.

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Image: What would a writer do with this source? by Kristin M. Woodward/Kate L. Ganski is licensed under CC BY 4.0

Featured Resources

The Political Brain : The Role of Emotion in Deciding the Fate of the Nation. [By] Drew Westen

The Political Brain is a groundbreaking investigation into the role of emotion in determining the political life of the nation. For two decades Drew Westen, professor of psychology and psychiatry at Emory University, has explored a theory of the mind that differs substantially from the more "dispassionate" notions held by most cognitive psychologists, political scientists, and economists—and Democratic campaign strategists. The idea of the mind as a cool calculator that makes decisions by weighing the evidence bears no relation to how the brain actually works. When political candidates assume voters dispassionately make decisions based on "the issues," they lose.

Geometry of the Passions : Fear, Hope, Happiness: Philosophy and Political Use. Remo Bodei and Gianpiero W. Doebler

The passions have long been condemned as a creator of disturbance and purveyor of the temporary loss of reason, but as Remo Bodei argues in Geometry of the Passions, we must abandon the perception that order and disorder are in a constant state of collision. By means of a theoretical and historical analysis, Bodei interprets the relationship between passion and reason as a conflict between two complementary logics. Geometry of the Passions investigates the paradoxical conflict-collaboration between passions and reason, and between individual and political projects.


Hijacking catastrophe : 9/11, fear & the selling of American empire

The 9/11 terror attacks continue to send shock waves through the American political system. Continuing fears about American vulnerability alternate with images of American military prowess and patriotic bravado in a transformed media landscape charged with emotion and starved for information. The result is that we have had little detailed debate about the radical turn US policy has taken since 9/11.

Leviathan, or, The matter, forme, and power of a common-wealth, ecclesiasticall and civill Hobbes, Thomas ; Hay, Rod ; 1999]


Presents an annotated edition of Thomas Hobbes's seventeenth-century work of political philosophy in which he addresses the idea that obedience to authority, especially in the form of a large bureaucracy such as the political state, is a part of human nature; and includes background writings and critical essays.

The Oxford Handbook of Political Psychology

Oxford Handbook of Political Psychology gathers together a distinguished group of scholars from around the world to shed light on such questions as: how does personality affect leadership style? What are the origins of racial prejudice? How does violent communal conflict originate? Focusing first on political psychology at the individual level (attitudes, values, decision-making, ideology, personality) and then moving to the collective (group identity, mass mobilization, political violence), this fully interdisciplinary volume covers models of the mass public and political elites and addresses both domestic issues and foreign policy.

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