How do emotions move across time and place?
How do we connect the emotional lives of the past with those of the present?
What is the place of the history of emotions in the future of the humanities?
These are some of the broader questions currently under investigation by researchers in the Australian Research Council’s Centre of Excellence for the History of Emotions, Europe 1100-1800. Individually our focus is on a range of projects about different periods and places, but collectively we are all busy tackling the task of how to research and to ‘write’ the history of emotions.
Updated by the Centre’s postdoctoral fellows and research associates, this blog will collect and archive researchers’ notes, thoughts, and findings – the cutting and the luminary, as well as the sketched and the scribbled – as we go about the day-to-day of our research.
We hope that this blog will last the life of the ARC Centre; maybe even beyond it. As new stories and new narratives are written at ‘Histories of Emotion’, we hope that early career researchers in the Australian humanities especially will find in the practices and methods explored here tidbits to sustain and to nourish ourselves and our field into the future.
Happy researching, and happy blogging.
Content posted by Stephanie Downes
Welcome to the blogosphere, dear New Researchers. I’m looking forward to your posts, and seeing how the conversation develops!
I’m working on protest in cities post-1960s onwards and the emotional response to the destruction of heritage and unpopular planning decisions. I am keen to provide a strong theoretical frame for my research, which is largely empirical with historiography from the planning history end. I’m aware of the work of Rosenwein and Stearn, but (hoping this is not too basic a question (!)) would like some suggestions for the most recent theoretical work in this area. Help pls!
Hi Jenny! Sounds like huge – and valuable – topic. I’m thinking Paris 1968. You could have your work cut out for you there alone! If you’re familiar with Rosenwein and Stearns, you may well have seen Jan Plamper’s fantastic interview with them and with William Reddy in 2010. It happens to be available online: http://centri.univr.it/rm/biblioteca/scaffale/Download/Autori_P/RM-Plamper-Interview.pdf
I also recommend Susan Matt. ‘Current Emotion Research in History: Or, Doing History from the Inside Out,’ Emotion Review 3 (2011): 117-124 for a recent summary of the field with some interesting new perspectives; and for the sort of work you’re doing, I don’t think you could go past:
Sara Ahmed’s The Cultural Politics of Emotion (New York: Routledge, 2004). She’s not a historian, but works with social and political contexts especially, and could provide you with some vocabulary to help frame the research in terms of emotional economies. Hope this helps!
Hi Stephanie, I should have said that I am limiting myself to Australian capital cities! not quite so huge! Have heard/read Jay Plamper’s great interview, and will follow up on Matt and Ahmed. Thanks for the pointers!