SoSe 14: Culture and Emotion in Cross-National Perspective
Christian von Scheve
Emotions are an integral part of human social life. They are inseparable from thinking and acting and are central to social interactions and relationships. Although the capacity to experience ... read more
Emotions are an integral part of human social life. They are inseparable from thinking and acting and are central to social interactions and relationships. Although the capacity to experience emotions is a human universal, emotions are substantially shaped by cultural and social structural forces. This is manifest in the many ways in which emotions are experienced, expressed, communicated, valued, regulated, and represented. In this course, we will explore these cultural differences in emotion, in particular from a cross-national perspective. First, we will discuss what emotions are, how they can be understood at social and cultural levels, and how they impact individual and social life. Second, you will learn how culture, in a broad understanding, shapes the experience and expression of emotion and the meanings that are attached to specific emotions. This includes, for example, discussions of the role of social norms, values, gender, identity, or social status. Third, we will focus on cross-national differences in emotional experience and emotional behavior. This includes comparative studies of different countries and cultures as well as issues related to migration, ethnicity, and transnationalization.
Turner, J. H. & Stets, J.E. (2006). Sociological Theories of Human Emotions. Annual Review of Sociology, 32, 25-52.
Mesquita, B. (2001). Culture and emotion. Different approaches to the question. In T.J. Mayne, & G.A. Bonanno (Eds.), Emotions. Current issues and future directions (pp. 214-250). New York: Guilford.
Term paper (graded, 3.000 words)