Misery and Company: Sympathy in Everyday Life (Hardback)Candace Clark (author)
Hardback 323 Pages
Email me when available
Stay one step ahead and let us notify you when this item is next available to order
Email me when available
Enter your email below and we will notify you when this item is next available to order.
Misery and Company: Sympathy in Everyday Life (Hardback)
We will contact you when this item is next available to order.
Candace Clark here seeks to identify the role sympathy plays in constructing the social order of American society. She explores the difference it makes for individuals, for relationships and for group solidarity if one person gives or withholds sympathy from another. She finds that when we sympathize, we not only express our concern and caring for another, but accrue "sympathy credits" for ourselves. Claiming, receiving, owing and giving sympathy are all subject to an intricate etiquette. The text also tackles a darker, less obvious side of sympathy - how we use it to gain power over others in evryday encounters. When sympathy points out people's problems or their inability to handle those problems, a show of sympathy can humiliate or dimish the recipient. Clark uses a wide variety of data-collection methods that include interviews, surveys and participant observation - "intensive eavesdropping" - in settings such as hospitals and funeral palours to support her case. Ultimately she constructs a kind of social tour of sympathy, revealing that the emotional experience modern Americans call sympathy has a history, a logic and a life of its own.
Publisher: The University of Chicago Press
Number of pages: 323
Weight: 624 g
Dimensions: 24 x 16 x 3 mm
You may also be interested in...
ReviewsSign In To Write A Review
Please sign in to write a review
Sign In / Register
Not registered? CREATE AN ACCOUNTCREATE A plus ACCOUNT
Download the Waterstones App
Would you like to proceed to the App store to download the Waterstones App?
Click & Collect
Reserve online, pay on collection
Thank you for your reservation
Your order is now being processed and we have sent a confirmation email to you at
When will my order be ready to collect?
Following the initial email, you will be contacted by the shop to confirm that your item is available for collection.
Call us on or send us an email at
Unfortunately there has been a problem with your order
Please try again or alternatively you can contact your chosen shop on or send us an email at