Affect & the Politics of Austerity

The political climate in the UK, given as it already was to the emotive and nationalist tropes of the War on Terror, found a new affective register with the financial crisis: the invocation of public and personal shame. Admittedly, shame and other moralized negativity has been never far from the national imagination. Some recognizable examples would be the Victorian marking of deserving and undeserving poor, the various moral panics of youth deviancy or the influence of communitarian authoritarianism on New Labour social policy.

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