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Lecture 20

PSYCH 211: Lecture 20 Notes

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Mathieu Le Corre

3. The basic emotions -joy, interest, surprise, distress, sadness, fear, anger -2 reasons why these are called basic emotions: -each emotion comes with its own little “package” with 3 things: -internal physiological reaction -a subjective experience -overt behaviour (facial expression, body language, etc.) -these emotions are experienced by all humans 4. Development of emotions: methodological challenge -we must look at babies -emotions are subjective -must rely on their facial expressions, body language, and body context in which these expressions happen because you cannot ask babies how they feel -we’re not born experiencing all possible emotions; we either feel good or bad -the negative emotions aren’t differentiated from each other (fear, sadness, anger) -when we’re born, when we’re sad, afraid, or angry, there is no differentiation; we just feel bad 5. Positive Emotions -smiling babies at 2-3 months don’t necessarily have to be in response to what’s around them -3 month olds smile more to people than to a puppet -smile is a bond between the baby and the caregiver; it is important that we form bonds with caregivers very early on -humans develop very slowly in the early stages of life (takes a very long time to walk); so if parents don’t take care of us during this time, we would not survive -7 months = formation of a preference (smile selectively at parents rather than strangers) 7. Anger -start seeing anger face between 4-8 months -1 year old = express anger to other people -anger outbursts peak at age 2 (“terrible 2’s”) 8. Fear -starts at 4 months in the presence of unfamiliar objects or events -stranger anxiety -6-7 months = babies begin to show fear of strangers (intensifies until age 2) -older babies show more fear than younger (13-month more than 9-month old) 9. Separation anxiety -until 8 months old, babies are ok left alone -8-9 months = babies begin to show distress when mother leaves -15-20 months = separation anxiety begins to fade 10. Separation anxiety -shows up around the same age in all cultures 11. Expressions “make sense” -5-6 months = babies make happy expressions when interacting with happy mothers; make angry expressions when mother is distracted or handles baby roughly 12. Testing whether expressions are learned: blind babies -do babies learn expressions by watching other make expressions? NO! (seen in blind baby studies) -2 months = blind babies smile when they hear their mother’s voice -therefore, expressions don’t need to be seen to be learned -because they can’t see that mom smiles back, the smile fades because there is no way for the mom or dad to communicate they are happy to the baby -parents of blind babies b
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