Mood and emotion


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Activists clash with police on 1 March 2020 in Kolkata during a protest against India’s new citizenship law and following sectarian riots in New Delhi. Photo by Indranil Aditya/NurPhoto via Getty

Essay/
Mood and emotion
Politics is visceral

In an age thick with anger and fear, we might dream of a purely rational politics but it would be a denial of our humanity

Manos Tsakiris

The First Cloud (1888) by William Quiller Orchardson. Courtesy the Tate Gallery/Wikipedia

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Love and friendship
Forgive and be free

Hurts – your own or those done to you – keep you stuck. Forgiveness therapy can help you gain perspective and move on

Nathaniel Wade

Two girls with their Cabbage Patch dolls. New York City, 1986. Photo by Leonard Freed/Magnum

Essay/
Mood and emotion
The bittersweet madeleine

It is a guilty pleasure and undergirds nationalist bombast, yet nostalgia for the past can help propel us into the future

Elizabeth Svoboda

American Civil Rights activist Malcolm X (left) pictured in New York in 1963. His radicalism helped shape public discourse. Photo by Robert L Haggins/The LIFE Images Collection/Getty

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Mood and emotion
The fruits of anger

To those who say anger is destructive or pointless: Not so! Getting angry spurs and sustains us to take action for justice

Brian Wong

Saint Catherine of Siena (c1612) by Juan Bautista Maíno. Courtesy the Museo del Prado, Madrid

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Illness and disease
Unholy anorexia

Medieval mystics starved the body to feed the soul. Understanding this perfectionist mindset could help treat anorexia today

Paul Broks

Black clothing, a distracted gaze: the height of Elizabethan fashion. Portrait of Henry Percy, 9th Earl of Northumberland (1590-1595), by Nicholas Hilliard. Photo courtesy the Rijksmuseum, Amsterdam

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Stories and literature
My mistress Melancholy

In The Anatomy of Melancholy, Robert Burton gave his life to charting a Renaissance disease both alluring and dangerous

Mary Ann Lund

Ostend, Belgium, 1988. Photo by Harry Gruyaert/Magnum Photos

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Mental health
Depressive realism

We keep chasing happiness, but true clarity comes from depression and existential angst. Admit that life is hell, and be free

Julie Reshe

Photo by Jean-François Monnot/EyeEm/Getty

Essay/
Love and friendship
Real love stories

Romantic expectations are often ridiculous and unhelpful, but attachment science can guide us to real and lasting love

Sue Johnson

Photo by David Pollack/Corbis/Getty

Essay/
Mood and emotion
The happiness ruse

How did feeling good become a matter of relentless, competitive work; a never-to-be-attained goal which makes us miserable?

Cody Delistraty

Photo by Andy McGowan/Getty

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Social psychology
Houses of horror

A ragged curtain, a creaking attic, a dark cellar – what explains the architecture of creepiness, and its enduring appeal?

Francis McAndrew

At the Remembrance Day ceremony at Old City Hall in Toronto, 11 November 2014. Photo by Mark Blinch/Reuters

Essay/
Human evolution
United by feelings

Universal emotions are the deep engine of human consciousness and the basis of our profound affinity with other animals

Stephen T Asma & Rami Gabriel