PSYC 102
May 1, 2008
1. EMOTION: Subjective feeling including arousal, cognitions, and expressions. It is a subjective experience with three components.
a. Physiological change or arousal
-arousal come from brain (particularly the limbic system) and autonomic nervous system (ANS). The sub cortex is where the limbic system is located. (evolutionary standpoint is older).
-The Amygdala seems to be the part of the brain that deals with fear and negative events. The fear has to be dealt with for the organism to operate.
-The SEPTUM: The companion to the Amygdala (that deals with negative emotions) … the septum seem to deal with positive things.
-There can be no emotion unless something changes in the body.
-Some people will neglect all normal things such as grooming, eating, sleeping etc. in order to satisfy an addiction which stimulates the Septum. This was studied in rats as well.
-Dopamine is a neurotransmitter that when released gives a satisfied experience to the organism.
-When the septum is stimulated, it makes rewards the brain.
-The brain can be fooled. It doesn’t know or care what the stimulus is that stimulates the septum, it only cares that it is responding.
-If something could stimulate the brain directly, it would feel just as good and the reward would be just as powerful.
-HIPPOCAMPUS: deals with memory and also the major way the hippocampus codes information is by the value it places on the emotion.
-The brain is set up to remember the emotion that is associated with an event or place.
-The emotion is more powerful than the memory itself.
-The HYPOTHALAMUS: also part of limbic system. Associated with eating etc. Very important in the good feeling associated with being full after a big meal or the feeling of “wow, this is good.” Makes you want to keep eating. Also, this is associated with the good feeling of orgasm and sexual feelings.
*These are all in the limbic system
1. Autonomic system also plays a role in emotion. It isn’t just the brain. The sympathetic part of the nervous system deals with “fight or flight” where it takes over when there is some type of threat. Physical changes/responses are noticed at a conscious level. i.e. pupils dilate, mouth becomes dry, respiration increases. Because these are noticeable, they can become a conscious part of emotions.
2. Parasympathetic system is similar. However, the physical responses are mirror images of each other. They are still associated to emotional experiences. These emotions are generally contentment and relaxation and a greater sense of control.
THEORIES OF EMOTION: Older historical models. Not really active today. This is merely where we came from. How you integrate the physiological with the behavioral experience.
A. JAMES-LANGE-Emotions occur after arousal.
-Have some philological/behavioral changes in the body. “fight or flight” type of things as well as running, crying etc.
-after this, some emotion is experienced
Ex. See a snake…sympathetic nervous system reactions take place…behavioral changes (may scream, run away)…after that some kind of emotion is experienced. “I’m afraid because I’m running away.” They react because they are aware of some response.
*Most believe the emotion is first and the response comes after. These researchers turn it around. “I’m crying because I’m sad.” When in actuality, it is opposite. You are sad because you are crying.
     B. CANNON-BARD-competitors with James-Lange. Believed Arousal and emotion occur simultaneously.
 -First you have a stimulus (snake)…this must be processed in the brain (the thalamus) because you have to decide if it is a threat and put meaning on the pattern… once it does this, ANS, BEHAVIOR,EMOTION occur at such a pace, it is difficult to determine which happens first, second, or third. These tend to run together.
**Problem was it was difficult to test the argument for James-Lange or Cannon.
A. FACIAL-FEEDBACK: facial movements elicit arousal and specific emotions.
-facial expression determines the emotion. This is what drives the processes later that result in the emotion.
-Behavioral response of the facial expression along with the physiological aspect.
-How do you test this? By manipulating facial expression but without clueing them in that they are trying to determine emotion by the manipulations.
EX. Place a pencil in their mouth and make them keep their teeth closed or showing.
*LAIRD (1974): Attached electrodes to students faces to study facial muscles. Showed them cartoons. Ask subs to contract muscles to form either smile or frown. Those who smiled while seeing cartoons rated them as funnier.
 -He would make people either smile or frown and not tell them they were associated with any emotion. He then would show them cartoons while he was “measuring” the muscles in the face. Both groups looked at the same cartoon. After they saw them, he then asked them how funny the cartoons were. The ones smiling rated the cartoons funnier than those that were asked to frown.
*KLEINKE et al., (1998): Had subject model either photos of happy or sad without knowing it was associated with any emotion. They rated emotions when asked how they felt while modeling these expressions. Those that modeled happy faces were happier.
*How can this work? How can smiling actually make you happier?
*ZAJONC (1993): Came up with the cool brain hypothesis.
 -Argued that when you adopt a smile, the muscles of the face are in such a pattern that it allows the vessels and capillaries to open up and allows a freer flow of blood around the head. This blood acts like a radiator in the car.
 -Tests were done to test this and proved that a cooler brain feels better! The feeling of feeling good is translated into an emotional experience.
     B. SCHACHTER’s TWO-FACTOR: Arousal leads to search for label and then emotion occurs.
-Integrated cognitive component as primary in emotion experience.
-Two components are
a. Physiological arousal
b. Cognitive Evaluation
*Not enough to be aroused, you must determine what that means.
*Large and complicated experiment. What he did was get subjects to come into the lab. They were given a shot with a hypodermic needle. This was either a placebo or epinephrine (Adrenalin). They were informed as to what this would do to them (they would get geared up etc.). A second group was given the shot as well, but were not informed as to what it would do to them. Next, they put them off and send them to a room to “think” while they got things together. In this room is a confederate who is working with the researcher but the subjects think they are one of them. They may act angry “pissed off mood.” The subject is having the symptoms of the shot but under these angry conditions. The other group is also having philological arousal but under happy conditions. Then, all the subjects were asked to explain what emotion they felt and how strongly they felt it.
 -The group that were informed were not affected by any emotion.
 -The uninformed subjects that were in the angry room experienced anger and very strongly
 -The uninformed subjects that were in the happy room experienced happiness.
*The uninformed subjects used the context they were in to rate emotion. The informed people had a reason for their emotions and philological arousal… it was because of the drugs. The uninformed used the context or environment to find a reason for their arousal and emotion. The angry guy gave them a reason to be angry. The happy was just the opposite.
*People tend to place their emotion according to the context they are in. Ex. Happy at a football game, sad at a funeral.
**Is it love or is it gas? LOL “I thought I was in love…but it was something I ate!”
b. Thoughts/cognitions. These are thoughts about what things means.
c. BEHAVIORAL COMPONENT OF EMOTION: Expressions of the emotion.