The essay develops a broad reflection about the sociology of emotions produced by Simmel, recalling the main analyses developed by the German sociologist on the experience of modernity. After having analyzed the main characteristics of modernity, two specific forms of emotional sociality will be used as magnifying lens: gratitude and friendship. Both are forms of playful interaction but also elementary forms of sociality, which create cohesion within the interaction and through which it is possible to reach an interpretation of social reality. Although emotions are an integral part of the subject, they exhibit aspects that go beyond the singularity of the individual, thus becoming ambivalent social phenomena: on one hand, they represent the individuality of the subject who experiences and exhibits them; on the other hand, once they are exhibited, they become the result of the social interaction and the social construction.
Simmel; sociology of emotions; gratitude; friendship