Epilogue: The Politics of Emotions: Difficulties of Collaboration

  • Henriette Dahan-Kalev
  • Emilie Le Febvre
Part of the Middle East Today book series (MIET)


Since the development of deconstructionist schools in social sciences over the past 30 years, anthropology unlike political science has taken significant steps in acknowledging the emotions and passions motivating political actions as well as academic works. As a political scientist, I often find myself emotionally connected to and constantly identifying with subjects during my studies. In particular, I find myself becoming emotionally involved during research, an experience that must be felt by all social science scholars (Swedenburg 1995). Research often makes us take sides, whether we were aware of it or not, more so during situations of conflict. This is why I have been strongly attracted to political anthropology and often found myself bending my scholarship in that direction. This move was at times frustrating as straddling between the disciplines is never smooth and always came with academic costs. Nevertheless, I now leaned toward the field of political anthropology. I strive to develop critical approaches to the mainstream political science literature such as those of Myers (1988), Papatiaxiarchis (1994), and Crapanzano (1994) in order to explore how social interactions generate human emotions and design their performances within cultural and political contexts (Moi’si 2010). I have a curiosity about questions of emotions in political conflicts such as those epitomized by the Israeli and Palestinian conflict and women’s relative activism in spaces of hostility such as these.


Israeli Society Arab Woman Symbolic Violence Israeli State Bedouin Woman 
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© Henriette Dahan-Kalev and Emilie Le Febvre 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  • Henriette Dahan-Kalev
  • Emilie Le Febvre

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