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7 Emotions Notes

Psychology Notes > Cognition and Emotion Notes

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3. Defining and Categorising Emotions a. Basic i. Ekman found 6 emotions which are expressed through the same facial expressions across different cultures: anger, fear, disgust, sadness, happiness, surprise ii. Tracy & Matsumoto (2008): Expressions of pride and shame are the same across cultures in Olympics (even in congenitally blind people, and concluded that they are innate rather than culturally learnt b. Complex - eg romantic love - an extensive set of brain regions activated when participants experienced it c. Dimensions: 2 factors - valence & arousal Theories of Emotion a. James-Lange Theory emotion happens as an interpretation of the physiological response b. Cannon-Bard Theory: feeling (subjective) and physiological response (objective) are stimulated simultaneously c. Singer-Schachter Theory two-factor theory: physical arousal and reasoning are required to appraise a stimulus before identifying it. d. LeDoux's (1996) model, in which amygdala plays a key role: amygdala produces a fearful response through 2 systems that work in parallel and operate together: low (fast, unconscious) & high Neural circuitry of Emotions (the brain regions involved in emotions): There are distinct neural regions involved in different aspects of emotional processing, and they all work together: A. The amygdala - role in: i. Recognizing and experiencing fear: Bilateral damage studies suggest that amygdala

1. SM: is required to recognize expressions of fear

2. Translates external threats into emotional response ii. Learning fear: Fear conditioning paradigm: 1) Necessary for learning the association between stimuli and threat: Lateral amygdala cells show plasticity (Single neurons of the amygdala in rats show patterns of firing during fear conditioning) ? amygdala mediates the changes that occur during CS-US association. Rats with amygdala lesions cannot make these association ? lesions block fear learning. 2) Necessary in Implicit learning: amygdala leasioned patients don't show skin conductance response (SCR), whereas hippocampus leasioned patients do the opposite. Normals do both. 3) Can also play a role in Explicit learning under some circumstances: fMRI shows increased activations in amygdala when subjects are told that they will receive a shock rather than when they are told that they will not, although no shock was given. So, role of amygdala in fear conditioning: lesions block fear learning; rats with amygdala lesions do not learn to associate the light (CS) with the shock (US) to produce a startle response (CR) iii. Consolidation of memory for emotionally arousing events i. Modulates hippocampal consolidation of LTM ii. Controls the rate of forgetting iv. Attention to fearful stimuli i. Highly arousing emotional stimuli require less attentional pre-requisites for awareness, compared to neutral ii. Attention gets unattended emotional stimuli into consciousness via long-lasting or transient changes in sensoty cortical tuning. B. The orbitofrontral cortex (OFC) - role in: DECISION MAKING a. reward b. inhibition of previously learned associations, using subjective states as outcomes of decisions to guide future responding C. The insula: - role in: a. Interoception b. disgust (integrating emotional bodily state information with cognitive factors)

1. Definition: a combination of feelings + physiological responses to stimulus + behavioural responses (e.g., smiling)

2. Categorizing emotions A. Basic emotions = unique characteristics - might be associated with particular physiological responses, elicited by particular stimuli. They are developed through evolution and reflected in facial expressions (we have a set/collection of facial expressions). If a relevant stimulus is present, it will trigger an evolved brain mechanism in the same way every time. Produce predictable, measurable changes in sensory, perceptual, motor, and physiological functions. Ekman did a lot of research in emotion - he studied facial expressions as a window on emotion. He found that a certain set of emotions is represented through the same set of facial across cultures ? innate, we all express basic emotions in the same way. Found 6 basic emotions: anger, fear, disgust, sadness, happiness, surprise. However, Tracy & Matsumoto (2008) examined whether expressions of pride and shame are instinctive, or whether they are cultural oddities that we learn through observation. They examined the body language of success and failure in Olympics, and found that they expressed in the same way across cultures, even in congenitally blind people. They suggest that pride and shame are innate emotions that transcend cultures and that they should be added to the 6. B. Complex emotions: combinations of basic emotions; they may be socially/ culturally learned, having no universal facial expressions. (they last for longer - hours/days/years/lifetime) E.g., jealousy, parental love, romantic love; Ortigue et al (2010) did a meta-analysis of neuroimaging studies on romantic love. They found that an extensive set of brain regions activated when participants experienced romantic love.

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