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Reconceptualising emotional capital and intimacy using a sociological lens: the Authentic Revolution

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Sociologists and public health scholars have called attention to the rise of social isolation and loneliness in the US. Considering these developments, it is vital to extend the sociological imagination to better understand the forms of meaningful connection and social relationship characteristics sought by individuals. The growing Authentic Movement represents a series of decentralised social groups in the US and abroad that focus on Authentic Relating and Circling Practices. This ethnographic research combines semi-structured interviews and participant observation techniques to examine how these groups promote and allow for participants to explore concepts of emotion intimacy and alternative ways to form authentic connections with others in psychologically safe and (semi-) structured environments. In addition, the research aims to explore how these communities specifically address the rising trends and social problem of social isolation and limited meaningful (emotional) connection with others.
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Keywords: emotion; emotional subcultures; intimacy; loneliness; social isolation

Affiliations: Western New Mexico University, USA

Appeared or available online: August 16, 2021

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