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COMMENTS 

Don’t let the Paris murderers win

Professor Laborde warns against the reactivist response to the Paris murders: they misunderstand the role played by free speech and by laïcité. Further, they allow criminals to set the term of the debate on how to better facilitate Muslim integration if France.
Professor Cécile Laborde
26 February 2015 More...

Starts: Feb 26, 2015 12:00:00 AM

Britain and EU reform

Piet Eeckhout revisits the question of EU reform, including different options for and legal as well as political constraints of such reform.
Professor Piet Eeckhout
20 January 2015 More...

Starts: Jan 20, 2015 12:00:00 AM

Europe and Research Excellence in the UK

Prof. Dame Julia Goodfellow examines the role of EU research collaboration and funding in sustaining and fostering research excellence in the UK.
Professor Dame Julia Goodfellow
9 February 2015 More...

Starts: Feb 7, 2015 12:00:00 AM

Research Grant awarded: Passionate Politics

6 August 2014

24 July 2014
The UCL European Institute, the UCL Centre for Transnational History and UCL School of Slavonic and East European Studies have been awarded £10,000 seed funding for a new interdisciplinary research project on “Passionate Politics” from CHIRP.


Passions play a fundamental role in shaping political movements and ideologies, providing the emotional basis of individual and social identities. Our historical understanding of key moments of social change remains impoverished if we fail to take into account the importance of grief, for example, as a response to social upheaval, the role of love and empathy in the creation of political and social solidarities, or the roots of political dissent in anger. The tradition of thinking about politics, stretching from the Stoics to Kant and Rawls, has tended to view the passionate nature of human beings with suspicion if not outright hostility. The passions sit uncomfortably with the idea of a social contract, for example, that is meant to be the product of reason. Until recently, the passions drew the attention of political theorists and philosophers above all because of their capacity to wreak havoc in the social order. Interdisciplinary approaches to conceptualizing affects have recently opened up a new way of understanding the human. Our project will draw on the unique opportunity that this ‘affective turn’ has brought to other fields by returning the passions to the study of politics.

The core group of the project consists of Tim Beasley-Murray (SSEES), Dina Gusejnova (CTH), Axel Körner (CTH) and Uta Staiger (EI). Over the next three years, the group will run a number of workshops, a reading group and an international conference. To support its research as well as public engagement with the project, the team will create a digital archive “Collecting Emotions”, featuring text, images, music, film and interviews.

We are grateful to the UCL Centre for Humanities Interdisciplinary Research Projects (CHIRP) for its support.