chapter  II
3 Pages

II.7 Mood R . S . WHITE

While few today would accept the universalism of a scholar like Thomas, the long history of crossings and intersections between psychological and grammatical discourse suggests, in certain cases at least, important links between language and emotion. As the concept of passion was abstracted from passive statements, it makes sense to see those statements as performative rather than referential, manifesting an affective position rather than simply describing it. To declare that one is frightened is to orient oneself in particular way, to place oneself in a passive position in regards to an object or situation. Returning to the work of Breen and Enterline, we may see how the exercises and iterative performances of the early modern schoolroom, in which students would rehearse various grammatical forms, might help to cultivate a particular emotional habitus. They would not only be trained in ways of speaking, but also in the ways of feeling that coincided with them.