Frankfurter Stadtgespräch XVI

Der Gefühlshaushalt des Kapitalismus. Geldgier als Strukturprinzip?

Prof. Ute Frevert (Max-Planck-Institut für Bildungsforschung) in conversation with Prof. Sighard Neckel (Cluster of Excellence "The Formation of Normative Orders")

Moderation: Rebecca Caroline Schmidt (Cluster of Excellence "The Formation of Normative Orders")

25 September 2014, 19pm

Historisches Museum
Fahrtor 2, Römerberg
Frankfurt am Main



Poster (pdf): click here...

Article: "Jede Gesellschaft konditioniert die Gefühle ihrer Bürger" - über den Wandel von Gefühlsregimen im Kapitalismus

Presented by:

Cluster of Excellence "The Formation of Normative Orders" with Kulturamt der Stadt Frankfurt am Main


Whether by way of explanation or justification, capitalism generally appeals to the rationality and objectivity of economic action. The ubiquitous talk of greed and the need for trust in markets, by contrast, seems to suggest that nonrational motives are central. At a time when burnout is an increasingly frequent occurrence, the question also arises of how people’s emotional world is shaped by capitalism. Doesn’t the rationality of capitalism necessarily presuppose emotional drives like greed for money? In what ways does capitalism transform the emotional make-up of modern human beings? This will be the theme of the 16th Frankfurt Encounter between Ute Frevert, emotion researcher and Director of the Max Planck Institute for Human Development in Berlin, and Sighard Neckel, Professor of Sociology at the Goethe University Frankfurt and Principal Investigator of the Cluster of Excellence ‘The Formation of Normative Orders’.

Ute Frevert is Director at the Max Planck Institute for Human Development in Berlin. As a historian and head of the Research Center ‘History of Emotions’, she collaborates not only with psychologists and educationalists, but also with anthropologists, sociologists, literary theorists, art historians and musicologists, in studying historical emotional constellations. One of the main focuses of her research is the history and historical power of emotions, addressing such questions as: Are feelings shaped by culture? and: Do feelings make history? She has also published studies on the subject of emotions and capitalism. Her other research interests are modern and contemporary history and social and gender history. Since 2009 she has been a member of the Berlin-Brandenburg Academy of Sciences and Humanities. A recipient of the Leibniz Prize of the German Research Foundation, she taught German history at Yale University in the USA from 2003 to 2007.

Sighard Neckel is Professor of Sociology at the Goethe University in Frankfurt am Main. He is also Principal Investigator of the Cluster of Excellence ‘The Formation of Normative Orders’ and a member of the faculty of the Institute of Social Research. His current research deals with the social impacts of finance market capitalism and of the global economy. Another focus of his research is the sociology of emotions. In this area he has published studies on the feelings of shame, anger, envy and greed, and has addressed processes of emotionalisation of the economy and society.He was awarded the 2010 Textbook Award of the German Sociological Association for his textbook Sternstunden der Soziologie. In autumn 2010 his study Strukturierte Verantwortungslosigkeit: Berichte aus der Bankenwelt was chosen as ‘Non-Fiction Book of the Month’.

Rebecca Caroline Schmidt studied law at the Goethe University and has been Scientific Manager of the Cluster of Excellence ‘The Formation of Normative Orders’ since the beginning of the second funding period on 1 November 2012. Prior to her appointment, she participated in a variety of university research projects both as researcher and coordinator.






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