Stephen Sweet Defines Emotional Labor

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    • 00:09

      STEPHEN SWEET: There are three conceptsI want to talk with you about regarding emotions.[Stephen Sweet, Associate Professor and Chair,Department of Sociology, Ithaca College]One is simply the experience of having emotions, feeling happy,feeling sad, feeling guilty.Those feelings can come about, both becauseof biological processes and psychological processes,and they can come about because of sociological processes.

    • 00:32

      STEPHEN SWEET [continued]: So that's the first, is just simplyemotions are experienced.The second concept I'll tell you about is emotion management.And emotion management is where a persontries to actually change the emotion that they'reexperiencing.And this could be, for instance, a person feeling very sadand trying to make themselves feel happier.

    • 00:53

      STEPHEN SWEET [continued]: Or a person feeling guilty and tryingto figure out a way of not feeling guilty,or to control their anxiety.So that's emotion management.That we can actually change our emotions,and we can do it through different techniques.Now the third thing is, and this isa really important sociological concept, is emotional labor.

    • 01:15

      STEPHEN SWEET [continued]: And the idea here is that sometimes emotion managementcan be put to use in order to work.And sometimes put to use in order to profit from work.Now think about, for instance, the waiter or waitressthat comes to a person's table and they

    • 01:36

      STEPHEN SWEET [continued]: try to make the person being servedfeel really good about coming to the restaurant.And they will put on a personal display of smiling,of being ingratiating, of maybe laughing, sometimesin a job that's really not an enjoyable job,but they paint the smile on.And then they get the person on the receiving end to smile,

    • 02:01

      STEPHEN SWEET [continued]: feel happy, hopefully in the end of receiving a good tip.Now that's an example of emotional labor, wherea person is trying to figure out how to not only changetheir own emotions, but change the emotionsof another person so that's somethingis created in the workplace.

Stephen Sweet Defines Emotional Labor

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Abstract

Professor Stephen Sweet discusses emotion in the workplace, dividing it into three concepts: having emotions, emotion management and emotional labor. Sweet highlights the sociology behind emotional labor and the conscious effort it takes to change your emotions and the emotions of those around you.

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Stephen Sweet Defines Emotional Labor

Professor Stephen Sweet discusses emotion in the workplace, dividing it into three concepts: having emotions, emotion management and emotional labor. Sweet highlights the sociology behind emotional labor and the conscious effort it takes to change your emotions and the emotions of those around you.

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