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December 3 - Week 15 Chapter 14 - PSYCH 3M03

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Aadil Merali Juma

WEEK 15 PSYCH 3M03 Chapter 14: Secondary, Self-Conscious Emotions November 28, 2013 Empathy, Embarrassment, Shame, Guilt  Communicative value of emotions  Extrinsic controls of behaviour – reward or punish others; has communicative value; eg/ praise and disapproval o Alters frequency of behaviour  Approval and Contempt o Praise = reinforce  Smiling, cheers, clapping, verbal expression, other tangible rewards o Disapproval = punishment  Frowning and upturned nose, disgust expression (innate, infantry expressions of rejection of things from gustatory tract; more symbolic expressions)  Culture-specific gestures, verbal expressions  Shunning (toward individuals who show social transgressions, do not speak to people who have offended you), demotion in rank  Can see that socialization and development could lead to internalization of emotions  Deeply internalized that emotion occurs spontaneously eg/ embarrassment  Embarrassment o Can only observe in own species o Polymorphism in personality traits; see individual differences; secondary emotion, occurs les often, more recently evolved o Coincides with recognition of self and first appears in 50% of two year-olds and 82% of three year-olds o Occurs in social events where unwanted events threaten the persons social image  Requires social exposure, not when alone o Embarrassment can be elicited by conspicuousness and scrutiny and without social gaff or failure  Often social exposure alone can lead to blushing o Downward gaze, “goofy” smiling, displacement activities (eg/ cover face with hands, play with hair)  Communicative o Blushing can occur (not always) o Heart rate can decrease  Also seen in sadness o Embarrassment is actively avoided, but adaptive in dealing with minor social transgressions o Serves as a reliable non-verbal apology (blushing is hard to feign) o People who show obvious embarrassment in an embarrassing situation are evaluated more favorably by observers than those who remain cool and poised  Appeasement gestures nullify potential for another to aggress against you  Shame o Complex of simpler emotions that occurs in the circumstances of major social transgressions  Having been caught for major selfishness that is not in the interest of the group, betraying others, sin in betraying community  Elements of sadness, anger (directed at ones self, can also be directed at ones self), withdrawal o Not a large amount of experimentation o More painful and darker than embarrassment and includes a private, internal component that embarrassment does not  Embarrassment is generally a less serious emotion  Reflects internal judgment of self, based on a failure to meet personal goals, expectations and ideals o Shame is arguably less adaptive than embarrassment and gives rise to anger towards self and others o Shame-prone people often lack empathy for others and susceptibility is correlated psychological maladjustment o Associated with misbehavior that is seen to be stables, internal and beyond one’s control – the self is deficient o Common antecedent of suicide  In embarrassment a person feels foolish; mix of sadness and surprise  Shame is a mixture of fear and disgust; regret and depression  Pride o Can be observed in very young children and later in life o Has to do with doing things that is done positively and the approval that occurs o Postures and expressions that are seen o Neural work is differentiable from simple joy and reinforcement with a reward  Joy and reinforcement is an ancient primitive neural reflex o Evidence indicates that pride has a distinct recognizable emotional expression o People identify the emotion uniquely when not cued with the word 1 WEEK 15 PSYCH 3M03 o Expression – small smile, with head tilted back slightly, visibly expanded posture, with arm raised above head or hands on hips o May serve as an adaptive emotional expression in social interactions o People displaying pride tend to take on dominant roles in social interactions o Also may be perceived as the most likeable interaction partners o Plays a role in perseverance toward goals o Differential cerebral activation  Participants read sentences expressing joy or pride during fMRI  Provide conditions – activated the right posterior superior temporal sulcus and left temporal pole  Joy conditions – activations in the ventral striatum and insula, areas associated with processing of hedonic or appetitive stimuli  Empathy o Defined a number of ways  Knowing what another is feeling  Feeling what another is feeling  Responding compassionately to another’s distress  Less scientific – knowing what another is feeling, feeling what another is feeling, compassionate response to the distress of someone else etc  More scientific – accurate detection of emotional information transmitted by another person o Accurate detection of the emotional information transmitted by another person o Empathy appears to be present even in infancy; a mother’s reaction to a stranger will influence how the infant reacts to that stranger as well  There is a large importance of maternal care on infant development o There is parental guidance in the development of empathy o Children with secure attachment to their mothers show more empathy to distressed peers o When children aged 1-2 years observe a peer or adult in distress, their reaction varies  Some ignore the distressed person, while others become quiet and show facial expression indicating concern; others become agitated as if overwhelmed  Autistic children make less eye contract than controls, and show less capacity to share interested or objects with others; empathic responses are seen, but less than in controls o Mothers who exhibit more prosocial behaviour have children that are more empathetic o Teaching empathy and socially appropriate behaviour gradually internalizes the mores of the society o “Policing” of behaviour by others (approval and contempt expressions) o Pro-social behaviour is policed internally via mechanisms of shame, guilt, pride and embarrassment o Some evidence of empathy in chimpanzees similar to that seen in infant humans o Anecdotal reports of empathy-like behaviour in dogs, cats, dolphins o Larger carnivores have rich social expression o Empathy vs. Sympathy
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