seminar: Dr Miranda Gill (University of Cambridge) ‘Emotion therapy for modern men: self-help culture in turn-of-the-century France'
Please note new time.
Refreshments served. All are welcome!
A joint event with French Studies (School of Modern Languages and Cultures)
This seminar explores connections between self-training regimes (askesis) and the history of emotions through an analysis of a bestselling self-help text, Jules Payot’s L’Education de la volonté (The Education of the Will, 1893). Payot’s internationally influential ‘will therapy’ exemplifies the cult of virile self-mastery that strongly marks turn-of-the-century medicine and social hygiene. Yet his writing also emphasises the emotional and existential vulnerability of modern men, and shows surprising faith in the redemptive power of emotions. His method highlights the continuing influence of ancient philosophy and religion on secular and science-based practices of the self, a tendency that still marks contemporary clinical psychology.