emotion.jpgby Dylan Evans

Emotion: The Science of Sentiment by Dylan Evans is the featured book for this episode of the Brain Science Podcast. Thanks to Kate from the UK for suggesting this book.

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Show Notes

This episode is a short introduction to the idea that our emotions are an essential part of our intellligence.

  • We discuss the Basic Emotions based on the work of anthropologist Paul Eckman.
  • We learn about culturally learned emotions such as "being a wild pig," which is observed among the Gurumba people of New Guinea
  • Paul Griffiths introduced the idea of "higher cognitive emotions"
  • Emotions seem to exist on a continuum from the highly innate basic emotions to the culturally specific emotions
  • The work of Joseph Ledoux and Antonio Damasio reveal that our emotions are an important element of normal intelligence
  • We consider how fear actually follows two pathways in the brain
  • We consider the role of the limbic system including the amygdala
  • We consider the relationship between emotions and mood
  • We consider how mood effects memory and decision making
  • We briefly consider the question of whether computers could ever display emotions

Further Reading

The Feeling of What Happens: Body and Emotion in the Making of Consciousness (2000)
by Antonio Damasio