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PSYCH 261 - Week 9 Textbook Notes (Modules 12.1-12.2)

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Daniel Smilek

PSYCH 261Psychological PsychologyModule 121 What Is EmotionMotivation an internal process that modifies the way an organism responds to a certain class of external stimuliEmotions Autonomic Arousal and the JamesLange TheorySympathetic nervous system prepares body for vigorous fight or flight responsesParasympathetic nervous system conserves energy rest and digestEach situation evokes a mixture of sympathetic and parasympathetic arousalJamesLange theory autonomic arousal and skeletal actions come first and the emotion is the label that you give your response o Ex feel afraid because you run away o Suggests that people with weak autonomic responses should feel less emotionEmotion has three components cognitions actions feelings o Appraisalaction behavioural aspectphysiologyemotional feelingIs Physiological Arousal Necessary for EmotionsParalysis does not affect the autonomic nervous system so it is possible that emotional feelings depend on feedback from autonomic feedback and not muscle movementPure autonomic failure output from autonomic nervous system to body completely fails o Doesnt react to stressful situations with changes in heart rate blood pressure or sweating o Still have emotions but feel them less intensely o Refer to cognitive aspect when reporting emotionsFeeling a body change is important for feeling emotionIs Physiological Arousal Sufficient for EmotionsIf responses occur spontaneously you may interpret increased sympathetic nervous system arousal as an emotion o Panic attacks are caused by extreme nervous system arousalRapid breathing makes people worry they are suffocating experience panic attackSmiles alter happiness slightly but are not necessary for happiness o Mobius syndrome inability to move facial muscles to make a smilePeople with this still experience happinessPerception of bodys actions contribute to emotional feelings embodiedAttempts to Localize Specific EmotionsLimbic system forebrain surrounding thalamus is critical for emotionNo one has demonstrated cells that respond only to a specific type of emotionDisgust is associated with the response of the insular cortex o Located in primary taste cortex which is why reacting with disgust is reacting as if something tasted bad o Also responds to frightening pictures and pictures of angry facesContributions of the Left and Right HemispheresLeft hemisphere activity relates to behavioural activation system o Low to moderate autonomic arousal o Tendency to approach characterizing happiness or anger o People with greater activity in frontal cortex of left hemisphere tend to be happier and more outgoingRight hemisphere activity relates to behavioural inhibition system
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