The Role of Emotions in Sustaining and Transmitting the Song and Dance Celebration: Summary of the Doctoral Thesis

Līga Vinogradova

Research output: Types of ThesisDoctoral Thesis


The Song and Dance Celebration is one of the most emotionally fulfilling and positive experiences in the Latvian culture. Previous studies have indicated emotions as a key precondition to transmit and sustain the tradition (Laķe & Muktupāvela, 2018). Because emotions have not been systematically researched in the context of tradition, suitable theoretical and methodological descriptions are lacking. The research question of this thesis was to study emotions as a prerequisite for inheritance and preservation. The aim of the thesis is to reveal the role of emotions in the tradition of the Celebration and related routine activities by amateur art groups, as well as to describe the prerequisites for emotions to improve the preservation of the Celebration. The theoretical basis of this thesis is sociology of emotions and the phenomenon of tradition. The analytical concept of the Celebration is tradition. To describe tradition, an interdisciplinary approach was used. Sociological analysis enables sociocultural description of emotions and reveals the manner in which emotions are the driving force in social interactions. Interaction ritual theory (Collins, 2004) was used as the theoretical framework of this thesis. It enables description of macro processes by means of micro interactions. In this framework, the Celebration was analyzed as a chain of interaction rituals where participants are motivated by long-term emotions. Visual research methods were adapted to study emotions in the context of the Celebration: observation with photo documentation, and photo-elicitation. Additionally, in-depth interviews were used. The thesis is based on qualitative methodology. In this study, 14 observations of amateur art groups, 37 in-depth photo analyses with their members, and 15 in-depth interviews with their leaders were performed. This data enabled analysis of tradition as a chain of tradition rituals to find out what role emotions play in it. In conclusion, the Song and Dance Celebration is the emotional culmination for amateur art groups. The culmination can be reached through positive emotional charge in their routine practices in the interim between Celebrations, which in turn ensures long-term involvement in the Celebration. The thesis provides recommendations for tradition implementers to maintain positive emotions
Original languageEnglish
  • Laķe, Anda, First/Primary/Lead supervisor
Place of PublicationRīga
Publication statusPublished - 2021


  • Sociology and Social Work
  • Social Work (Sociology of Emotions)
  • sociology of emotions
  • the Song and Dance Celebration
  • traditions
  • visual research methods
  • interaction

Field of Science*

  • 5.4 Sociology

Publication Type*

  • 4. Doctoral Thesis


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