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Evaluate Arlie Hochschilds social theory of human emotions The study of emotion is relatively new to the sociological arena Writers have in the past touched on the subject in relation to their particular theories Marx for example uses the concept of alienation as a key part to his meta-theory of society However it was not until recently that a sociology of emotion had been studied as an isolated concept The American writer and social theorist Arlie Hochschild is seen as one of the key writers to address the social aspects of emotion in a more direct way than previous writers Hochschilds work raises a number of important points that go towards a social study of emotions Emotion management feeling rules and emotional labour are just some of the concepts Hochschild has brought to the debate This paper will attempt to provide a critique of Hochschilds social theory of human emotions Firstly the paper will highlight the key concepts and ideas that Hochschild raises in her theory The second part of the paper will draw on a number of key writers on the subject in an attempt to bring to light the main problems in her work These criticisms will be centred on the idea that Hochschilds work is over-simplistic and ahistorical It will also attempt to show that emotion management is nothing new to human society that has always to some degree relied on the management of emotion Many writers see Hochschilds work as foundational to the development of a sociology of emotions Stemming from the writings of Goffman and other symbolic interactionists her work has managed to clarify many of the problems social theory has encountered when seeking a social as opposed to psychological explanation for our emotions There is also a Marxist element to her work which rejuvenates his theory of Alienation this time with reference to emotional labour In her analysis of flight attendants she believes that
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