Course Title: Political action, motivation and the socio-political context of felt emotions
Action readiness is considered a central property of emotions in most psychological theories. Nevertheless, emotions do not always lead to action, due to the intervening effects of motivation. After a brief introduction on definitional issues of emotion, this session integrates recent psychological theories that (i) help us explain how socio-political events act as triggers of emotions and (ii) unravel the psychological mechanisms that strengthen or weaken the link between emotion and motivation, as well as the determinants that turn motivation to different types of action. A common premise in the theories discussed is that the conditions which generate emotion and those which transform motivation into action are socially determined. The socio-political context, with its beliefs, norms and values appears to be the most potent determinant of what types of emotions are felt, to what degree, and what kinds of action these emotions motivate. The theoretical discussion will be enriched with relevant research findings from the Greek socio-economic crisis.