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Grant number like: FB-51914-05

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Daniel Bernard Wickberg
University of Texas, Dallas (Richardson, TX 75080-3021)

Fellowships for College Teachers and Independent Scholars
Research Programs

$40,000 (approved)
$40,000 (awarded)

Grant period:
8/1/2005 – 5/31/2006

Sympathy as a Keyword in American Culture, 1750-1950

This book-length project examines the changing meanings of the idea of sympathy in American culture over two hundred years. It is concerned with how contradictions in American ideas about personhood and social order were contained in this idea. The ideology of liberalism situated authority within the individual; sympathy was both a key component of the internalized self of American liberal culture, and an avenue overcoming self isolation though affective and imaginative bonds with other persons. Drawing on the perspectives of intellectual history, the interdisciplinary study of personhood, and the history of emotions, this project will be of interest to a broad array of scholars concerned with modern ideology and American history.