Rituals: Emotions, community faith in soul and the messiness of life

Ronald Hustedde, Betty King

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

21 Scopus citations


This paper explores the significance of emotions in community life. Emotions are defined as value judgements about 'objects' over which individuals and communities have little control. These objects could be places, things, events or people. When we respond to objects with sadness, anxiety, anger, gratitude, joy, or a range of other emotions, we are making value judgements. It is asserted that emotions cannot be separated from community life or rational thought. We also address one aspect of a community's emotional life, a 'great faith in soul.' We define soul and investigate how a community developer can help a community to respond to its 'great faith in soul' in ways that recognize the messiness in community. Community rituals dealing with transition and chaos, celebration and healing are explored. These rituals are links between the ideals associated with soul and the disorderly aspects of community life.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)338-348
Number of pages11
JournalCommunity Development Journal
Issue number4
StatePublished - Oct 2002

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Development


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