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Author: Rob Boddice

The history of emotions is the first accessible textbook on the theories, methods, achievements, and problems in this burgeoning field of historical inquiry. Historians of emotion borrow heavily from the disciplines of anthropology, psychology, philosophy and neuroscience, and stake out a claim that emotions have a past and change over time. This book introduces students and professional historians to the main areas of concern in the history of emotions, discussing how the emotions intersect with other lines of historical research relating to power, practice, society and morality. Providing a narrative of historical emotions concepts, the book is the go-to handbook for understanding the problems of interpreting historical experience, collating and evaluating all the principal methodological tools generated and used by historians of emotion. It also lays out an historiographical map of emotions history research in the past and present, and sets the agenda for the future of the history of emotions. Chiefly centring on the rapprochement of the humanities and the neurosciences, the book proposes a way forward in which disciplinary lines become blurred. Addressing criticism from both within and without the discipline of history, The history of emotions offers a rigorous defence of this new approach, demonstrating its potential to lie at the centre of historiographical practice, as well as the importance of this kind of historical work for our general understanding of the human brain and the meaning of human experience.

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A history of a medical specialty in modern Britain, c. 1789–2000

Since the 1990s, the English-speaking world has seen the rise of a neuroculture derived from neurology and neuroscience. The Neurologists is a book that asks how did we arrive at this moment? What is it about neurology and neuroscience that makes neuroculture seem self-evident? To tell this story The Neurologists charts a chronological course from the time of the French Revolution to after the ‘Decade of the Brain’ that outlines the rise of medical and scientific neurology and the emergence of neuroculture. With its focus chiefly on Great Britain, arguably the place where it all began, The Neurologists describes how Victorian physicians located in a medical culture that privileged general knowledge over narrow specialism came to be transformed into the specialized physicians now called neurologists. The Neurologists therefore recasts the received history of neurology and the history of professions and specialties. It provides new insights into the social, cultural, and institutional practices of British medical and scientific culture in the nineteenth and twentieth century. Delving into how and why physicians and scientists were interested in nerves, the nervous system, the brain, and the psyche, The Neurologists explores how Renaissance-styled men and women of medicine and science made neurology the medical field seemingly most concerned by the ‘philosophical status of man.’

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Chris Abel

3 Embodied minds Since Maurice Merleau-Ponty and Michael Polanyi recorded their thoughts on extended cognition, advances in the neurosciences have not only shed new light on the subject but have also generated a fruitful exchange with other disciplines, sometimes involving close collaboration between philosophers and scientists. This has led in turn to radically new approaches and potential answers to the perennial mystery of the self: what a self is, how it relates to issues of consciousness and, if such a thing really exists, how it might have evolved. This

in The extended self
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Rob Boddice

Over the course of this book I have tried to gauge from where the history of emotions came, why it is important and where we are now. In various ways, especially with reference to the turn to the neurosciences, genetics and to the question of morality, I have tried to suggest the potential routes for our historiographical future. By way of conclusion I want to re-state what is at stake in the history of emotions, and to emphasise what must happen in the coming years if the approach (currently a plural here would be more appropriate) is to prove to be

in The history of emotions
Theatre of Debate
Simon Parry

mobilised diverse forms of expertise in reworking both pedagogy and curriculum. Theatre, education and the politics of life itself 99 The rise of genetics and neuroscience has played a central role in the contemporary politics of life and, as such, provides a thread through Y Touring’s practice. Theatre of Debate has sustained an exploration of genetics and genomics from the 1995 production and tours of The Gift by Nicola Baldwin, dealing with the ethics and politics of genetic screening, through to and beyond the 2011 production of Dayglo by Abi Bown that examined the

in Science in performance
Rob Boddice

radical statement aligning the history of emotions solely with the adherents of social constructionism. On the contrary, the once distant disciplines of anthropology and neuroscience are rapidly being bridged: on the one hand by the observation that cultural context undoubtedly prescribes, delimits and influences experience; and on the other hand by the neuroscientific insight that humans are neurologically plastic, writeable pieces of hardware. Instead of a nature/nurture dyad, more of which below, neuroscientists and anthropologists alike are pointing us in a

in The history of emotions
Rob Boddice

it. Pain, the brain and the neuro turn The conjecture above is underwritten by borrowed knowledge from neuroscience about the ‘plastic’ nature of synaptic development. Not all historians of emotions are taking the ‘neuro turn’, and indeed there are some who would draw attention to the distinctions between, even contradictions of, the history of emotions and neurohistory. 29 It is important to take a brief diversion into neurohistoriography (which might be a new coinage), for it seems likely that the neuro turn is only going to become more

in The history of emotions
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The precariousness of positive emotions in Webster’s The Duchess of Malfi
Lalita Pandit Hogan

. Further, this process of unfolding can be read as a comment on the potency as well as the precariousness of positive emotion. Bosola's moral disgust at the brothers as rank and corrupt members of the nobility, expressed at the very beginning of the play in strong visceral terms, serves to create a boundary between him and them. In cognitive neuroscience moral disgust is specifically associated with removing oneself from untrustworthy people, 2 illustrated here in the way Bosola uses this affect to remove himself

in Positive emotions in early modern literature and culture
Dystopian performatives and vertigo aesthetics in popular theatre
Simon Parry

register public feelings or reflect a particular zeitgeist. Their various modes of theatricality establish a relationship between performers and spectators but also articulate connections between a range of scientific discourses on climate change, population change, water management, genetics and neuroscience; apparently anti-scientific cultural forms such as myth, mysticism and magic; and aesthetic conventions from literary fiction, pop music and fashion. As such I argue that they constitute a set of speculative theatrical practices. In their book Capitalist Sorcery

in Science in performance
Word and image in the twenty-first century. Envoi
Catherine Gander and Sarah Garland

realms, too, processes of knowledge, response and cognition are proving to be more similar than previously thought, in a manner that further serves to undermine the philosophical linguistic turn of the late twentieth century and complicate even further the dilemma in terminology highlighted above. In neuroscience, the perceptual–conceptual, verbal–visual division is becoming increasingly disintegrated. At the time of writing this conclusion, research appeared in the Journal of Neuroscience empirically pointing to the fact that the human brain ‘reads’ known words as

in Mixed messages