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Living Faithfully in an Unjust WorldCompassionate Care in Russia$
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Melissa L. Caldwell

Print publication date: 2016

Print ISBN-13: 9780520285835

Published to California Scholarship Online: May 2017

DOI: 10.1525/california/9780520285835.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM CALIFORNIA SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.california.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright University of California Press, 2017. All Rights Reserved. Under the terms of the licence agreement, an individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in CALSO for personal use (for details see http://california.universitypressscholarship.com/page/535/privacy-policy-and-legal-notice).date: 21 November 2017

Practical Love

Practical Love

Chapter:
(p.65) 3 Practical Love
Source:
Living Faithfully in an Unjust World
Author(s):

Melissa L. Caldwell

Publisher:
University of California Press
DOI:10.1525/california/9780520285835.003.0003

This chapter analyzes the subjective and experiential qualities of compassion in care work, with particular focus on how volunteers and recipients describe the relationships they forge with one another as deeply intimate experiences of care and affection. By focusing on intersubjective experiences of accompaniment, friendship, and love that emerge through circulations of care, members of Russia’s religiously affiliated assistance community describe their interactions as forms of intimacy and shared humanity, rather than spiritual encounters. This approach presents a counterpoint to anthropological theories of compassion and empathy by illuminating the dynamic and generative nature of economies of affect. Acts and ethics of faith-driven compassion build communities of intimacy and sentiment between assistance providers and their recipients.

Keywords:   Russia, compassion, empathy, faith, intimacy, intersubjectivity, economies of affect, love, friendship

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