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A Theory of Feelings

Agnes Heller

A Theory of Feelings examines the problem of human feelings, widely understood, from phenomenological, analytic, and historical perspectives. It begins with an analysis of drives and affects, and pursues the nature of "feeling" itself, in all of its variability, through a close study of the distinctive categories of emotions, emotional dispositions, orientive feelings, and the passions. As such, the starting point of the anlysis entails an examination of the characteristics of human involvement, or our ways of being in the world. Building upon this assessment of the conditions of human involvement, the philosophical history and emotional economy characteristic of modern relationships is treated, and the nature of expression, social division, suffering, and responsibility is evaluated in light of the theory of feeling presented here. The book is recommended to anyone interested in philosophy, psychology, sociology, and cognitive science. « less more »
Lexington Books
Pages: 242Size: 6 1/4 x 9 1/2
978-0-7391-2966-1 • Hardback • February 2009 • $95.00 • (£65.00)
978-0-7391-2967-8 • Paperback • February 2009 • $39.99 • (£24.95)
978-1-4616-3288-7 • eBook • February 2009 • $37.99 • (£24.95)
Agnes Heller is the Hannah Arendt Professor of Philosophy at the New School for Social Research and a member of the Hungarian Academy of Sciences.
Part 1 Introduction to the Second Edition
Part 2 The Phenomenology of Feelings
Chapter 3 What Does it Mean to Feel
Chapter 4 The Classification of Feelings
Chapter 5 How Do We Learn to Feel?
Chapter 6 Value Orientation and Feelings
Chapter 7 Particularist and Individual Feelings
Part 8 Contributions to the Social Philosophy of Feelings
Chapter 9 Introduction to Part II
Chapter 10 About the Historical Dynamics of the Bourgeois World of Feelings in General
Chapter 11 The Housekeeping of Feelings
Chapter 12 The Abstraction of Feelings and Beyond
Part 13 Epilogue: On Human Suffering
Since its initial publication in 1979, Agnes Heller's A Theory of Feelings has remained an unsurpassed point of reference for understanding this pivotal, if subterranean current of the Western philosophical tradition. Remarkably, in the wake of the postmodern “critique of reason,” Heller's book has become even more timely than when it first appeared. This new edition reinforces Heller's status as one of the most innovative philosophical minds of the last half century.
Richard Wolin, Distinguished Professor of History and Political Science, CUNY Graduate Center