Wednesday, October 1, 2008

Psychology of Emotion

Cannon-Bard Theory


The Cannon-Bard theory argues that we experience physiological arousal and emotional at the same time, but gives no attention to the role of thoughts or outward behavior.

EXAMPLE:  You are walking down a dark alley late at night.  You hear footsteps behind you and you begin to tremble, your heart beats faster, and your breathing deepens.  At the same time as these physiological changes occur you also experience the emotion of fear.

In this respect complex emotions may be regarded as developments upon basic emotions. Such development may occur due to cultural conditioning or association.

The Psychology of Emotions, Feelings and Thoughts by Mark Pettinelli

"This book puts forth the idea that life is divided into three groups, emotion, thinking, and feeling. These three groups make humans feel in certain ways, thinking, physical stimulus, and emotion all contribute to feeling. But what is the difference between a thought, an emotion, and a feeling? Is there an overlap between the three? Probably, since any emotion can be broken down into the sensations and real events that caused it, and these events all lead to emotions, feelings and thoughts. So emotions, feelings and thoughts all might have the same source, they are just expressed differently in the mind. Where do your emotions, feelings and thoughts rate on a scale of clarity? Where do they rate on a scale of focus and attention? How does understanding the psychology of ones emotions, feelings and thoughts lead to a long term increased consciousness?"

After someone mentioned in critique today the dangerous 'dark alley' standard, I went to research some sort of social psychology that might relate to why dark alleys seem to be intrinsically linked with ideas of threat or danger, but I couldn't find any research directly spelling it out. What I did find were some theories about the process of the human emotional response. I was mostly interested in the link between stimulus and response and ideas of social conditioning replacing the need for an actual physical stimulus (this can lead you to more research about fear and paranoia in particular).

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