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Lecture 7

PSYB10 Lecture 7

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Elizabeth Page- Gould

PSYB10 Lecture 7 – Emotions and Morality What is an emotion? - a brief physiological and psychological response to an event that is felt subjectively and prepares a person for action. Classes of Emotion - 6 basic emotions - Complex emotions  Positive emotions  Self-conscious 6 basic emotions 1) Fear 2) Anger 3) Disgust 4) Sadness 5) Happiness 6) Surprise Complex emotions - Blends of basic emotions - Most studied examples: positive emotions, self-conscious  Positive Emotions - Most Studied Examples: - Gratitude - Contentment - Amusement - Desire - Love (contested)  Self conscious emotions - Most studied examples: - Pride - Shame - Guilt - Embarrassment Time course of emotion Emotions are short-lived (Ekman, 1984) - Real Emotions: between 500 ms - 4 s - Fake Emotions: between 1 - 10 s An emotion can appear to persist if the emotional stimulus is presented repeatedly Not all emotions have the same duration: - Surprise is the briefest - Happiness, disgust, and sadness are standard length - Anger and fear last a little longer Due to their time-course, these things are NOT emotions: - Moods  E.g., being in a good or bad mood - Sentiments  E.g., wishing someone well - Affective personality traits  E.g., “he is a cheerful person.” or “She is an angry person.” - By itself, level of arousal  e.g., sleepiness Mood VS Emotion Moods are a generalized affective state, but they do not have the following criteria for an emotion: - Stimulus-Response: a mood is not always a response to an evocative stimulus - Time period: Moods persist over time (i.e., minutes, hours, days) - Action Tendencies: Moods may not call for an action - Experience: Moods are mostly subjective; they are not observable physiologically Physiology and Emotion - Peripheral Nervous System - Central Nervous System - Proper inference Emotions in the Peripheral Nervous System - Most researchers require a peripheral physiological response to state that an emotion has occurred.  Eg. Heart rate, skin conductance, pre-ejection period, finger temperature - Important caveat about inference - Emotions cannot be identified by peripheral responses - Indicate degree of arousal or intensity Emotions in the Central Nervous System - What areas of the brain are involved in the processing of emotional stimuli? - Limbic System  Amygdala: Fear and Anger  Hypothalamus: Laughter - Frontal Cortex  Everything else Physiology and Emotion: Proper Inference - Physiological profiles & locations help us understand arousal, intensity & possible circuits - Emotions cannot be identified by examining physiological states James-Lange Theory of Emotion  Every emotion has a distinct, specific pattern of physiological responses that characterizes and underlies it. - Implications: - implies that our psychological experience of emotion is the result of our underlying physiological responses - Implies that every emotion has a physiological signature - a pattern or “profile” of physiological responses that uniquely identify it - Specific bodily (physio) response tells us what emotion we are feeling - Bodily response is specific Event  Specific Bodily Response  Subjective Emotion Example: Perception of Event : See a Bear Bodily Expression: Sweat, Increased heart rate, RUN! Subjective Experience: Become Afraid Feedback to the system: Levenson, Ekman, & Friesen (1990) Method: 1. Tell participants to pose face in certain ways “Directed Facial Action Task” 2. Ask them what expression they are demonstrating 3. Measure physiological responses Directed Facial Action Task - Pull eyebrows down and together - Raise your upper eyelid - Push your lower lip up and press your lips together.  Results: - Participants were able to identify emotions from instructions - Reliable physio profiles Cognitive Component: Cognitive Appraisals - The MEANING of an event affects our emotional response to it - Ex: Getting Punched - He meant to do it and he meant it to hurt ➔ ANGER - He meant to do it, but was joking around ➔ AMUSEMENT Key Appraisals for Eliciting Emotion - Self-relevance - Goal congruence - Blame & Responsibility - Certainty - Coping Ability Two-Factor Theory of Emotion - Physiological arousal is generalized, not specific - We apply a label to the arousal based on cognitive appraisal Event  General Arousal + Appraisal  Emotion Example: - My heart is pounding! Something’s happening! - Bears are dangerous. I’m Scared! Schacter & Singer (1964) Method: 1. Give people Heart-rate Increasing Pill or Placebo 2. Have them complete a survey with very personal questions 3. An actor gets angry at the questionnaire 4. What does the participant do?  Results - Aroused participants expressed greater anger than the actor - Non-aroused participants didn’t get angry James-Lange vs. 2-Factor - James-Lange says specific emotions are distinct and real - 2-Factor says specific emotions are an illusion of appraisal Behaviour Channels - Facial Display - Body Posture - Vocal Tone - Touch - Action! Facial Display Electromyography (EMG) - Captures subtle facial movements - Best used for situations where facial movement is not visually detectable - Obtrusive measurement technique Facial Action Coding System (FACS) - Codes overt facial expressions - Numbers all Facial muscle actions - Classifies emotions as patterns of muscle Actions that occur together - E.G., Anger: 4, 5, 7, 23 Function and Action Action - Emotions have “Action Tendencies”: approach or Avoid the emotional stimulus - E.g. - Anger ➔ Approach - Fear ➔ avoid - Disgust ➔ avoid - Happiness ➔ Approach - This is the Functional service of emotions Functionality of Emotions - Emotions allow us to: - Act quickly  Just like heuristics - Are typically correct, but sometimes wrong (just like heuristics) - Emotions allow us to quickly respond to the most important stimuli in life - The action tendencies o
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