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Bureaucracy and Emotions - Perspectives across Disciplines


In traditional administrative models the public servant is emotionally conceptualized in a specific way, namely as a rationally acting and emotionally abstinent person. However, these are also models of observation that are strongly guided on the one hand by normative ideas and on the other by historical master narratives that focus on the development of a specifically occidental rationality. In particular, the emotional turn in historical science inspires us to take a critical view of such assumptions. But other approaches developed in other scientific disciplines also stimulate us to sharpen our historical view of the emotional aspects of bureaucracy: in jurisprudence “Law and Emotions” and in sociology “Sociology of Emotions”. This article presents these scientific approaches and tries to sound out their usefulness for the history of administration. In this way, it also serves as an introduction to this volume of the journal Administory.