What remains remarkable about The Civilizing Process1 is the boldness with which Elias asserted that there is a long-term, complex causal chain linking changes in manners and etiquette, changes in the valence of emotions and the centralization of power in the early modern state in Europe. If Elias’s detailed and graphic tracing of the history of accepted behavior in polite society is unquestionably the most memorable aspect of the book, his discussion of the growing control over the emotions and the developing domination of society by the increasingly powerful state is the most signifi - cant for the arguments developed in this chapter.