1st Edition

Transcending Crisis by Attending to Care, Emotion, and Flourishing

Edited By Marci Cottingham, Rebecca Erickson, Matthew Lee Copyright 2023

    This book offers new empirical research and policy-relevant care practices from across the globe to understand the interrelation of care, emotion, and flourishing in the context of acute and persistent crises.


    From COVID-19 responses around the world to the opioid epidemic in the United States, this volume investigates collective and individual crises as symptoms of underlying systemic pathologies. Crises require deep engagement with both structure and culture, drawing on interdisciplinary perspectives from sociology, nursing, social work, and psychology. Addressing the multi-level challenges of caregiving in families, schools, organizations, and communities, this book presents examples of research and practice that demonstrate compassion, resilience, productive collaboration, and flourishing. It documents the social conditions and processes that spawn effective solutions and positive emotional and health outcomes, which often occur amid chaos, rapid social change, and substantial suffering. The first section focuses on care, emotions, and flourishing in healthcare and educational contexts to examine nurses, students, and teachers as they respond to enduring and acute crises. Section two turns to community and family contexts to understand how emotions and care intertwine in the flourishing practices of women and communities facing isolation during COVID-19, parents of opioid users, and international efforts to address child abuse and healthy aging. Geographically, the book covers experiences in Canada, Ghana, India, Italy, Sweden, the United Kingdom, and the United States. Each chapter discusses how we can move from managing emotions and coping with crisis to transcending crisis and promoting flourishing. The book includes case studies that illustrate hopeful and successful practices that might help us meet the challenges we face in this moment and move through them with compassion and enhanced flourishing.


    Examining care across a range of professional contexts, including healthcare, education, community, and family settings, the authors explore similarities and differences in how these contexts shape care practices in light of collective threats and crises. This book is also a valuable contribution to the literatures on health and illness, the sociology of emotions, and the interdisciplinary field of well-being and flourishing.

    Chapter 1- Introduction: Transcending Crisis by Attending to Care, Emotion, and Flourishing

    Marci D. Cottingham, Rebecca J. Erickson, and Matthew T. Lee

    Part I: Transcending Crises in Healthcare and Education

    Chapter 2- Talking Emotional Labor: Institutionalizing Emotional Support for Health Care Workers

    Benjamin DiCicco-Bloom and Barbara DiCicco-Bloom

    Chapter 3- Building Academic Resilience in Secondary School Students: A Research Review and Case Study

    Jonathan Beale & Iro Konstantinou

    Chapter 4- The Unanticipated Challenges and Rewards of Carework: Remote Teaching & Student Precarity During COVID-19

    Paoyi Huang and Robin G. Isserles

    Chapter 5- Flourishing among Nursing Students During the COVID-19 Pandemic

    Harroop Kaur Sharda and Lorelli Nowell

    Part II: Transcending Crises in Communities and Families

    Chapter 6- Emotional Community and Estrangement in the COVID-19 Pandemic: A Collaborative Auto-Ethnographic Approach

    Cecilia Y. Nordquist, Alessandra Minissale, Stina Bergman Blix

    Chapter 7- It’s Power, Not Pandemic: How Identifying Power Structures Enables Emotional Resilience During Crisis Caregiving

    Preethi Krishnan, Priya Pillai, Suchitra Venkatachalam, and Payten R Kleinhenz

    Chapter 8- From Discovery to Recovery: Parents’ Temporal Emotion Practice in Relation to a Child’s Opioid Use Disorder

    Melissa Swauger, Dana Hysock Witham, Alex Heckert, Christian Vaccaro, Danielle Covolo, Victor Garcia, and Erick Lauber

    Chapter 9- Seven

    Jennifer Wortham

    Chapter 10- From Fixing to Flourishing in Gerontological Social Work Research

    Alexandra Crampton



    Marci D. Cottingham is Associate Professor of Sociology at Kenyon College, United States. She was previously Associate Professor of Sociology at the University of Amsterdam in the Netherlands, and a visiting fellow at the Hanse-Wissenschaftskolleg Institute for Advanced Studies in Germany.

    Rebecca J. Erickson is Professor of Sociology, and Chair of Sociology and Anthropology at The University of Akron, United States.

    Matthew T. Lee is Professor of the Social Sciences and Humanities at the Institute for Studies of Religion at Baylor University and Flourishing Network Director and Research Associate at the Human Flourishing Program in the Institute for Quantitative Social Science at Harvard University, United States. He is also a Distinguished Visiting Scholar of Health, Flourishing, and Positive Psychology at Stony Brook University’s Center for Medical Humanities, Compassionate Care, and Bioethics.