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Paperback | ISBN: 9780262540575 | 395 pp. | 6 x 9 in | March 1990

The Rationality of Emotion


In this urbane and witty book, Ronald de Sousa disputes the widespread notion that reason and emotion are natural antagonists. He argues that emotions are a kind of perception, that their roots in the paradigm scenarios in which they are learned give them an essentially dramatic structure, and that they have a crucial role to play in rational beliefs, desires, and decisions by breaking the deadlocks of pure reason

Ronald de Sousa is Professor of Philosophy at the University of Toronto.


"De Sousa demolishes just about all the reasons there could be for thinking that there is anything intrinsically irrational or anti-rational about any interestingly wide class of emotions, and makes a good case for the claim that we are capable of rationality - thought, reasoned decision and social coordination - largely because we are the creatures with the emotions we have. This is an interesting and important claim."
Times Higher Education Supplement

"One of the virtues of de Sousa's book is that it offers an analysis of the emotions that will be congenial to many philosophers working in the cognitivist tradition."
Owen Flanagan, Wellesley College,