The channelling of anger: Social democracy and political emotionality

Project leader

Funding source

Riksbankens Jubileumsfond (RJ)

Project Details

Start date: 01/01/2009
End date: 31/12/2011
Funding: 1940000 SEK


Are there emotions in politics? What is the role of emotions in politics? It is hardly possible to imagine life and human interaction without emotions; during history, however, human emotions have been treated differently. Strong feelings also occur in politics, although these emotions have mostly been considered to be a disturbance to smooth decision-making. In accordance with new research on politics and emotions, I here argue that emotions should not be considered foreign to politics. Emotions are fundamental to political engagement. There are always emotions in politics, although they manifest themselves in different ways. In this project I will scrutinize the role of emotions in Swedish social democracy, focusing on political speeches from Hjalmar Branting to Göran Persson.

The aim of this project is twofold: to gain a deeper understanding of emotions in politics as such, and to analyse political emotions in the particular context of Swedish social democracy during the 20th century. More specifically, I investigate how political anger has been treated by social democracy and how this particular emotion has been positioned in relation to other kinds of emotions.

The project starts out from four possible hypotheses: substance and contours of political emotionality have continuously been reshaped in political speeches.

Last updated on 2017-24-03 at 12:52