1st Edition

Shadows of the Soul Philosophical Perspectives on Negative Emotions

    Negative emotions are familiar enough, but they have rarely been a topic of study in their own right. This volume brings together fourteen chapters on negative emotions, written in a highly accessible style for non-specialists and specialists alike. It starts with chapters on general issues raised by negative emotions, such as the nature of valence, the theoretical implications of nasty emotions, the role of negative emotions in fiction, as well as the puzzles raised by ambivalent and mixed emotions. The second part of the volume consists of studies of specific emotional phenomena, ranging from the emotion of being moved and the sense of uncanniness to jealousy, hatred, shame, contempt, anxiety, and grief.

    Table of Contents

    Notes on Contributors


    1. Emotionally Charged: The Puzzle of Affective Valence

    Fabrice Teroni

    2. Nasty Emotions and the Perception of Values

    Christine Tappolet

    3. Imaginative Resistance: Negative Emotions, Values and Fiction

    Anne Reboul

    4. Who is Afraid of Contrary Emotions?

    Clotilde Calabi and Marco Santambrogio

    5. Bitter Joys and Sweet Sorrows

    Olivier Massin

    6. The Emotion of Being Moved

    Julien A. Deonna

    7. The Uncanny and Other Negative Existential Feelings

    Jérôme Dokic

    8. Disgustingly handsome: Nausea in the Face of Physical Beauty

    Anita Konzelmann Ziv

    9. Stench and Olfactory Disgust

    Vivian Mizrahi

    10. Anxiety: A Case Study on the Value of Negative Emotion

    Charlie Kurth

    11. Grief

    Carolyn Price

    12. The Moral Shadows of Shame and Contempt

    Raffaele Rodogno

    13. Negative Emotions and Racism

    Luc Faucher

    14. How to Think Yourself Out of Jealousy

    Ronald de Sousa


    Christine Tappolet is Full Professor at the Département de philosophie at the Université de Montréal. Her research interests lie mainly in ethics, moral psychology, and emotion theory. She has edited a number of volumes, including, with Sarah Stroud, Weakness of Will and Practical Rationality (2003), and is the author of two books, Émotions et valeurs (2000), and Emotions, Values, and Agency (2016).

    Fabrice Teroni is Associate Professor in the Philosophy Department at the University of Geneva. He has published several articles and monographs on the general theory of emotions (The Emotions: A Philosophical Introduction, Routledge 2012), on the nature of shame (In Defense of Shame: The Faces of an Emotion, 2011) and on memory. He has recently edited, with Hichem Naar, The Ontology of Emotions (2017).

    Anita Konzelmann Ziv was Senior Research and Teaching Assistant in the Philosophy Department at the University of Geneva. Her research focuses on shared and moral emotions. She co-edited Self-Evaluation – Affective and Social Grounds of Intentionality (2011) and Institutions, Emotions, and Group Agents: Contributions to Social Ontology (2013).

    "This is a superb, albeit unsettling, volume. Existence without anxiety, grief, disgust, hatred, or jealousy would be unrecognisable and an understanding of such negative emotions is an essential part of the examined life. Ranging from accounts of particular negative emotions to general issues concerning emotional valence, ambivalence, value, and rationality, these essays are essential reading for anyone working on affective phenomena."

    - Joel Smith, Senior Lecturer in Philosophy, The University of Manchester