Базовые принципы социологии эмоций
The paper outlines the basic principles of the sociology of emotions as a discipline based on the latest ideas and results in this field of knowledge. These principles emphasize the specifics of the sociology of emotions and include key theoretical lines of sociological research of emotions. The author originally developed some of the principles. The list of principles doesn't cover all of the possible foundations of the field, and the author intended rather to indicate the initial limits and possibilities of this discipline than to accomplish a synthesis of existing theoretical perspectives and concepts. Theoretical conceptualization is ongoing process on in the sociology of emotions, as well as seeking for new methods of empirical research of emotions. Sociologists study emotions in every possible social context, aiming not only to study the emotions themselves, but also consider the emotions as means of access to nature and the typical features of various social phenomena. Therefore, the general idea of the article may be summarized as follows: the sociology of emotions can provide the growth of knowledge about social phenomena through the consideration of socio-structural and cultural conditions of emotions, including situational factors, and by eliciting the social functions of emotions on the micro- and macro- levels of social structure. Refs 49.
The sociology of emotions as a relatively new field of research is extremely rapidly developing in contemporary social sciences. This field is now only emerging in Russian sociology, so it seems challenging and important to identify the main principles of sociological research of emotions based on the current state of the field. These principles can help to answer the question: why do sociologists need to study emotions and what opportunities the research of emotions can open for sociology. The list of principles formulated by the author of the article outlines the initial boundaries of the discipline and the necessary, although not complete, conditions for studying emotions from the point of view of sociology. One of the main substantive implications that can be drawn on the basis of this list of principles is that sociologists consider the role of emotions in all spheres of society's life primarily as a means of the studying unexplored aspects of social phenomena. Hence the main content of the singled out principles and possibilities of the sociology of emotions – the increase of knowledge about society is provided through the study of the socio-structural and cultural causes of emotional experiences and through the consideration of the role of emotions as a link between the micro- and macrolevel of the social structure. In a generalized form, such principles have not yet been singled out in the Russian sociological literature.
The article discusses general and specific problems of integration methods of the social and natural sciences, in particular sociobiology, evolutionary psychology and sociology methods in the study of emotions. The author argues that the emotion research, first of all moral emotions from the perspective of the evolutionary approach, can serve as a sort of "point", in which it is possible to combine methodological tools of sociology, sociobiology, evolutionary psychology and partly neuropsychophysiology to study complex social phenomena as morality and altruism, as well as various kinds of behavior associated with them. The paper discusses the theoretical and methodological aspects of the study of emotions in this way.
A review of Y. Plamper’s book The History of Emotions could hardly reflect its content of the process of the emergence of the history of the discipline of emotions, and the rich variety of problems and themes in the field of emotion research. Therefore, the topic of this article concerns the meaning of this monograph for the sociological study of emotions. We tried to highlight the points of the intersection of the history and the sociology of emotions, including the sociological explanation of the so-called “emotional turn” in social sciences and humanities and in everyday life of contemporary society. The main theoretical and methodological opposition — social constructivism versus universalism/naturalism — pervades all sciences researching emotions today, and a researcher’s destiny depends on the choice within the framework of this opposition. Plamper’s book allows the making of that choice, while inciting researchers to a synthetic approach. The book helps to refine and enrich the sociological study of emotions on the basis of factual evidence and new terminology. One of the most important tasks of both disciplines is the explanation of the changes of the emotional culture of modern societies, which, according to the author of the article, involves an “explosion” of interest in emotions in theory, research, and everyday life. Perhaps a new “sentimental age” has begun as an unintended consequence of the rationalization of all spheres of society. The combination of a rational attitude to emotions and, at the same time, the special attention to feelings, the explosions of collective emotions, and the persistent searching for authentic feelings are features of the emotional culture of our time.
The article discusses the main difficulties in emotion research in sociology, which are associated with a variety of different definitions and classifications of emotions as well as the difficulties of detection and identification of emotions in the process of empirical research. The author presents a new methodological strategies in empirical studies of emotions, which are mainly based on the combination of different methods which researchers use simultaneously or sequentially for the study of certain emotional states and processes in various structural and institutional social contexts. The analysis includes the latest research conducted by American, Australian and European sociologists.
Translator’s Afterword “Heart” of a Sociologist and the Sociology of Emotions in a Contemporary University Olga A. Simonova
The author writes about textbook's aims and objectives, its genre and structure in the preface, that is why in this final article I wanted to make a few important comments in regards to the translation, highlight the important issues, about which the author writes, and make some remarks on teaching of the sociology of emotions to contemporary students. Although we provided the textbook with the respective translator's comments, at the same time a necessity arises to leave some clarifications, because this book is one of the most illustrative examples of how different could be notions of emotions, although it seems (completely misleadingly at that!) that we are talking about something universal for all people, regardless of culture, social order and historical time period.
Several approaches to the concept of fatherhood present in Western sociological tradition are analyzed and compared: biological determinism, social constructivism and biosocial theory. The problematics of fatherhood and men’s parental practices is marginalized in modern Russian social research devoted to family and this fact makes the traditional inequality in family relations, when the father’s role is considered secondary compared to that of mother, even stronger. However, in Western critical men’s studies several stages can be outlined: the development of “sex roles” paradigm (biological determinism), the emergence of the hegemonic masculinity concept, inter-disciplinary stage (biosocial theory). According to the approach of biological determinism, the role of a father is that of the patriarch, he continues the family line and serves as a model for his ascendants. Social constructivism looks into man’s functions in the family from the point of view of masculine pressure and establishing hegemony over a woman and children. Biosocial theory aims to unite the biological determinacy of fatherhood with social, cultural and personal context. It is shown that these approaches are directly connected with the level of the society development, marriage and family perceptions, the level of egality of gender order.