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Mental Health and Emotions

  • Robin W. SimonEmail author
Chapter
Part of the Handbooks of Sociology and Social Research book series (HSSR)

Abstract

This chapter provides an overview of sociological scholarship on social status variations in mental health and emotions among adults in the United States. Although sociologists have long argued that there is a close link between individuals’ various social positions in society and their private feelings, I focus on major methodological innovations, substantive findings and theoretical developments that have emerged from the sociologies of mental health and emotions from the 1970s to the present with respect to gender, marital status and socioeconomic status differences in the experience and expression of emotion and emotional well-being/distress. I also point to some important gaps in knowledge about and compelling topics for future research on this topic. Overall, by documenting and explaining the social patterning of subjectively experienced feelings, expressive behavior and emotional well-being/distress in the adult population, sociologists of mental health and emotion have made significant contributions to knowledge about social influences on human emotion.

Keywords

Emotions Feelings Emotional distress Emotional well-being Mental health Emotional expression Social status Gender Marital status Socioeconomic status 

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Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Wake Forest UniversityWinston-SalemUSA

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