Domestic Contracts

John Corrigan

in Business of the Heart

Published by University of California Press

Published in print December 2001 | ISBN: 9780520221963
Published online May 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780520924321 | DOI:
Domestic Contracts

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Against the background of the objectification of emotion, the business of the heart acquired its characteristic shape as the transaction of emotion. This chapter focuses on the manner in which relations between men and women increasingly were conceived as the negotiation of feelings. Men could marry for money as well. As an object, as a commodity, emotion was always in play, being given and taken in a host of domestic situations. Relations also entailed the transactions involving emotional property, and on child rearing as domestic practice in which emotion was withheld or bestowed as part of a program of nurturance and control. The notion of contract underlying such relations extended as well to the classroom, where teachers acting in loco parentis were expected to enforce the same regime of emotional exchange as was undertaken in the home. As Bostonians adapted the language of business to their emotional relations with one another, they advanced the nascent process of the commodification of emotion, ensuring that it would profoundly shape the Businessmen's Revival.

Keywords: objectification of emotion; domestic contracts; emotional property; Bostonians; Businessmen's Revival

Chapter.  10432 words. 

Subjects: Religious Studies

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