Emotion: The Basics: 1st Edition (Paperback) book cover

Emotion: The Basics

1st Edition

By Michael Brady


168 pages

Purchasing Options:$ = USD
Paperback: 9781138081390
pub: 2018-12-19
SAVE ~$4.99
Hardback: 9781138081376
pub: 2018-12-11
SAVE ~$23.00
eBook (VitalSource) : 9780429025068
pub: 2018-12-07
from $12.48

FREE Standard Shipping!


While human beings might be rational animals, they are emotional animals as well. Emotions play a central role in all areas of our lives and if we are to have a proper understanding of human life and activity, we ought to have a good grasp of the emotions. Michael S. Brady structures Emotion: The Basics around two basic, yet fundamental, questions: What are emotions? And what do emotions do? In answering these questions Brady provides insight into a core component of all our lives, covering:

  • the nature of emotion;
  • emotion, knowledge, and understanding;
  • emotion and action;
  • emotions and social groups;
  • emotion, morality, and art.

In this concise and insightful introduction, Brady explains why we are often better off as a result of emotion rather than reason being in the driving seat, as our lives, both individual and social, would be significantly impoverished without the emotions. With a glossary of key terms and suggestions for further reading, Emotion: The Basics is an ideal starting point for anyone seeking a full introduction to the philosophical study of emotion.


'This is an excellent book: lucidly and engagingly written, packed with appealing examples, and persuasively argued. While developing his own thesis, Brady takes care throughout to draw his readers into the debate, providing them with the tools to think about the issues for themselves. The result is a stimulating and illuminating introduction to the philosophy of emotion.'

Carolyn Price, The Open University, UK

Table of Contents



Chapter 1 The Nature of Emotion

How to do philosophy (of emotion)

Some complications

Three theories of emotion

A different theoretical perspective

Chapter 2 Emotion, Knowledge, and Understanding


Emotion, attention, and understanding

Emotion and intellectual virtue

Chapter 3 Emotion and Action

Emotions and decisions

Motivation, dispositions, and desires

The role of feeling in motivation

Chapter 4 Emotions and Social Groups

Love and commitment

Pride and the communication of virtue

The social value of group emotion

Chapter 5 Emotion, Morality, and Art

Emotion and morality

The arts and emotion



About the Author

Michael S. Brady is Professor of Philosophy at the University of Glasgow, UK. He works on the philosophy of emotion and its links with moral philosophy and epistemology, and has published and edited a number of books in these areas.

About the Series

The Basics

The Basics is a highly successful series of accessible guidebooks which provide an overview of the fundamental principles of a subject area in a jargon-free and undaunting format.

Intended for students approaching a subject for the first time, the books both introduce the essentials of a subject and provide an ideal springboard for further study. With over 50 titles spanning subjects from Artificial Intelligence to Women’s Studies, The Basics are an ideal starting point for students seeking to understand a subject area.

Each text comes with recommendations for further study and gradually introduces the complexities and nuances within a subject.

Learn more…

Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings: