How do emotions affect participation in protests, and in politics more generally? In The Emotions of Protests
(University of Chicago Press, 2018), James M. Jasper
develops a solid critique to approaches that present political action as strictly rational and emotions as something outside the realm of strategy. Instead, Jasper speaks about feeling-thinking processes to highlight the interaction between strategic thinking and emotions, and the impact they have on participation in politics.
Jasper divides emotions in five categories: reflex emotions (what we normally thinking of when we refer to emotions), urges, moods, affective commitments, and moral commitments. Through an extensive elaboration of these five concepts and the different emotions associated with each of them, Jasper builds a solid ground for the development of what he terms a ‘theory of action’.
This book will stimulate sociologists and political scientists interested in social movements and protests, as well as anyone attracted by debates about rationality.
Felipe G. Santos is a PhD candidate at the Central European University. His research is focused on how activists care for each other and how care practices within social movements mobilize and radicalize heavily aggrieved collectives.