Wednesday, October 12, 2011

On Sentimentality, Frustration and Other Mixed Emotions

The other night a catastrophe happened:

I had no new reading material. So I ended up re-reading Oscar Wilde's De Profundis, and his definition of sentimentality struck me as meaningful:
"A sentimentalist", Oscar Wilde wrote Alfred Douglas, "is one who desires to have the luxury of an emotion without paying for it.
Like having a nice cry while watching a sad movie?

What do you think of Wilde's definition there?

I have always been fascinated by the mixed emotions, or emotions which appear mixed to me. Frustration is a good example: It clearly has aspects of anger in it but also something else, most likely boredom? Or is it just a diluted form of anger? Can those kinds of emotions be split into their constituents parts?

I'm sure wiser minds have written on all this and it's of no real importance. But fun to think about. So what are the parts of feeling that something is "fun"?