Week 1 Notes - Nature of the Emotions
Week 1 Notes - Nature of the Emotions 20986
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This 8 page Class Notes was uploaded by Ian Peck on Saturday September 5, 2015. The Class Notes belongs to 20986 at University of Pittsburgh taught by James Lennox in Summer 2015. Since its upload, it has received 132 views. For similar materials see The Nature of the Emotions in OTHER at University of Pittsburgh.
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Date Created: 09/05/15
HPS 605 Nature of the Emotions Notes on Lecture Week 1 I Categorizing Emotions A Questions to Consider 1 What are emotions generally 2 How do we differentiate emotions from other experiences 3 How do we distinguish one emotion from another B Emotions in General II ii iii 1 Affective experiences Passions 2 Neuro Physiological Reactions 3 Expressive Behaviors 4 Evaluations 5 Beliefs None of these some or all could be solutions to this question it is uncertain Testing the Answers U PP N Affective States Neuro Physiological Responses Expressive Behaviors Evaluative Responses Cognitive Responses Consider are these 4 theories compatible with one another or must they remain separate to make sense Emotions as Affective States What it means To feel an emotion is to be affected hence affective Each emotion involve pleasure and pain in some capacity Trivia Common answer in 17th18th centuries Looks at emotions as passions as in the Greek Pathe meaning affection Promise Evidence Emotions are described as overwhelming that they are a force of our nature rather than our will We do not decide when we will be happy sad angry etc iv Problems arguments against this theory Non occurring emotions such as jolly individual a grumpy old man seem to hold emotions as characteristics not an affected state Regardless of pleasure or pain the emotions we feel are not always clear even to us and must be evaluated what am I feeling Why am I feeling this way Emotions are not only felt but expressed B Neuro Physiological Theories i Theory Emotions are the body s reaction to stimuli in the environment ii What it means We feel fear when startled by something we experience such as an explosion Our reactions to that event eeing to safety or running to help see the commotion are not part of the emotion iii Promise the physiological aspects of emotions are taken seriously in this theory iv Problems An individual may feel an emotion merely by contemplating about a corresponding event e g last year s festival evokes happiness Previously established evaluations and beliefs affect reactions to stimuli around us like the awe you felt witnessing your first thunderstorm C Behavioral Theories i Two Versions 1 Strong Version We express ourselves via emotion e g an anxious student paces in their dorm room the night before a test 2 Weak Version Actually understanding our emotions can be achieved through expressing them ii Promise The various emotions we associate with corresponding expressions are taken seriously Includes emotion in evolution iii Problems It is possible to feel an emotion without expressing it iv Questions to consider Can we express an emotion even if we cannot feel it Evaluative Theories i Sees emotions as values that we assign to certain outcomes Ex we assign pride to achievement and shame to failure ii Two Versions 1 Strong Version Emotions are evaluative by nature 2 Weak Version Not every emotion is evaluative iii Promise Explains emotion s connection to our morals and works of art Explains why emotions help us to see things from a different perspective iv Problems When an emotion is felt the reaction is often instantaneous with no time given for evaluation Some emotions are felt without sources such as anxiety and depression Cognitive Theories i The language of emotions presupposes descriptive and evaluative beliefs about the objects of our emotions Professor Lennox ii What it means Rather than feelings emotions are seen as thoughts Ex You sleep in you are at work late and thus you feel shame iii Problems Like before emotions occur so fast that thought has no significant opportunity to in uence them until afterwards By this logic animals would not be capable of having emotions iv Things to Note 1 This theory is different from the evaluative theory in this way There may be certain evaluative responses that operate separately from our preestablished beliefs and thoughts Notes on Reading 1 Pgs 511 I A D II Introduction Paragraph 1 i Why are Aristotle s Views on emotion not commonly studied they are recorded largely in his other works Rhetoric not commonly studied by philosophers de Anima and Nicomachean Ethics Paragraph 2 i What is the psyche mentioned in de Anima the soul or life principle all emotions stem from the soul ii What did Aristotle believe that his predecessor Plato did not That there was a unity between the irrational and rational sides of the soul Paragraph 3 i Aristotle theorizes that beliefs bodily motions and physiological changes are inseparable elements of emotion how is this different from other theories on emotions The clear diVision of Mindbody dualism found in other theories keep the irrational and rational aspects of emotion separate Aristotle s theory maintains that emotions can be both ii How are emotions like morals according to Aristotle they can be taught and are characterized by belief Paragraph 4 i What are some of the ways that emotions are so complex specifically with regard to Aristotle s thoughts on anger there are insights into behaVior and morality e g how others should be treated what makes us angry and why we react with anger when we do with the prerequisites of anger From Rhetoric A Page 6 ii iii B Page 7 i ii iii How does Aristotle define Emotion that which lead s one s condition to become so transformed that his judgement is affected and which is accompanied by pleasure and pain What three things does Aristotle advise to look for while investigating anger the temperament of the subjects studied Temperament who they are prone to be angered by Source and what specifically is making them angry with regard to the situation Cause According to Aristotle why would something like pleasure be derived from the expression of anger because with anger is a desire for vengeance and its fruition imaginary or real is a pleasant thought to those who were wronged What is slighting In what three ways does Aristotle find anger to be invoked by slighting Explain each by giving an example from the text Slighting the implementing of an opinion about what one considers to be worthless 1 Scorn not giving credit to another for work you deem worthless 2 Spite acting in such a way to prevent another from attaining what they seek at no benefit to yourself 3 Insolence not showing the proper respect one is due thus insulting them What observation does Aristotle make about those who show insolence or disrespect to others that is applicable to our society even today those with privilege advantage or authority over others are insolent towards those who are lacking in the quality they have in excess e g wealthy towards the poor educated towards the illiterate powerful and towards the weak What conclusion does Aristotle make about the temperament source and cause outlined in Aii above It is the distress of the individual that gives rise to anger From distress comes desire to rectify the situation which manifests itself in an outburst of anger C Page 8 i When a desire goes unfulfilled this too causes an individual to become angry What kinds of things according to the reading will anger someone who is distressed without hope of fulfilling their desire anything that makes light of the individual s plight inhibits hisher ability to rectify it whether on purpose or not refuses to help or annoys the individual in some manner ii Such anger becomes increasingly severe if the angered individuals suspect that this ability or quality does not belong or appear to belong to them for they do not mind the ridicule when they feel thoroughly superior in those abilities or qualities at which others scoff This is an example of which of the three ways to invoke anger Insolence note the word superior illustrates that the individual being slighted expects the respect of someone who is experienced iii What kinds of other situations mentioned in the book where the absence of an expected kind of treatment will lead an individual to anger ill treatment from supposed friends acts of kindness not being repaid by those who received them friends not speaking well of himher those who deliberately take pleasure in one s misfortune or downfalls and those who enjoy pointing out the aws of others D Page 9 i According to Aristotle we are prone to anger when the actions of others inhibits hinders or harms our own agendas in what five ways 1 Slighting in the presence of those who envy us 2 Slighting in the presence of those who we admire 3 Slighting in the presence of those we wish to be admired 4 Slighting in the presence of those we respect 5 Slighting in the presence of those who respect us ii Anger is also brought on by disgrace What kinds of things must undergo criticism to invoke anger in the individual according to Aristotle Slighting of the family or of anyone or thing of value to the individual III From On the Soul both translations A Page 9 i What are the conditions of the soul Why is it in the province pf the natural scientist The conditions of the soul are the emotions Because an emotion like anger is felt and expressed brought about by this for a reason for the sake of that it is work best suited for a natural scientist one who observes ii Aristotle makes a connection between emotions conditions of the soul and what theory of emotion What does he specifically say to suggest this Are there aspects of the theory not mentioned The Neuro Physiological Theory And it would seem that all the affections of the soul involve the body the body is affected in some way Aristotle does not touch on the specific detail that emotions are brought on by environmental stimuli Conversely he states that sometime though nothing frightful is present people come to be frightened a problem with the Behavioral theory B Page 10 i The major difference between both translations is the inclusion of the natural scientist in the alternative What is the importance of this professional with regard to the matter and formal account The true natural scientist considers both the matter and the formal account of why one is angry Matter refers to the boiling of the blood Physiological aspect while the formal account looks at the context why the individual is angry IV From N icomachean Ethics A Page 10 i Under what conditions is anger justified according to Aristotle Angry behavior is condoned when the individual displaying anger is directing that anger at what and at whom he should in the way and when and for as long as he should Page 11 i ii In what two ways then is anger not condoned 1 When Anger is in an overabundance or 2 When it is not shown at all or enough then it is not justifiable behaVior If too little anger an indiVidual is labeled spineless or incapable of defending himherself If too much the indiVidual is overreacting Finally what will stop the hottempered and their anger according to Aristotle Only Vengeance produces a cessation by exchanging pleasure for pain So they must act on their anger express it for it to subside
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