PSYC 1000 Chapter Notes -Joseph E. Ledoux, Stanley Schachter, Walter Bradford Cannon
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Course: PSYC*1000 (DE)
Professor: Harvey Marmurek
Schedule: Summer, 2012
Textbook: Psychology – Tenth Edition in Modules authored by David G. Myers
Textbook ISBN: 9781464102615
Module 35: Introduction to Emotion
Cognition and Emotion
How do arousal and expressive behaviours interact in emotion?
Emotions are a mix of bodily, arousal (heart pounding), expressive behaviours, and conscious
experience. How do these pieces fit together?
-Does your bodily arousal come before or after your emotional feelings?
-How do thinking (cognition) and feeling interact? Does cognition always come before
Historical Emotion Theories
•James-Lange Theory: Arousal Comes Before Emotion
oCry because we are sad, lash out because we are angry, tremble because we are
afraid. William James has things backward. We feel sorry because we cry, angry
because we strike, afraid because we tremble. Carl Lange (Danish physiologist).
James and Lange would say that I noticed my heart racing and then shaking with
fright, felt the whoosh of emotion. Feeling of fear followed body’s response.
•Cannon-Bard Theory: Arousal and Emotion Occur Simultaneously
oPhysiologist Walter Cannon (1871-1945)
oBodily responses and experienced emotions occur separately but simultaneously
oMeans – my heart began pounding as I experienced fear
The emotion-triggering stimulus traveled to my sympathetic nervous
system, causing my body’s arousal. At the same time, it traveled to my
brain’s cortex, causing my awareness of my emotion.
oChallenged by studies of people with severed spinal cords
Lower-spine injuries – reported little change in their emotions’ intensity
High spinal cord injury – reported changes; some reactions were much
less intense than before; but those emotions felt above the neck were
more intense (crying, lumps in throat)
oMost researchers now agree that our emotions also involve cognition
According to the Cannon-Bard theory, (a) our physiological response to a stimulus (for example, a
pounding heart) and (b) the emotion we experience (for example, fear) occur (simultaneously).
According to the James-Lange theory (a) and (b) occur (sequentially).
Cognition Can Define Emotion: Schachter and Singer
To experience emotions, must we consciously interpret and label them?
Stanley Schachter and Jerome Singer (1962)
•An emotional experience requires a conscious interpretation of arousal: Our physical
reactions and our thoughts (perceptions, memories, and interpretations) together create
•Two-factor theory – emotions have two ingredients: physical arousal and cognitive
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