The Emotions

The Emotions : A Philosophical Theory

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Philosophical theories of emotions, and to an extent some theories of scientific psychology, represent attempts to capture the essence of emotions basically as they are conceived in common sense psychology. Although there are problems, the success of explanations of our behavior in terms of believes, desires and emotions creates a presumption that, at some level of abstraction, they reflect important elements in our psychological nature. It is incumbent on a theory of emotions to provide an account of two salient facts about emotions as conceived in common sense psychology. As intentional states, emotions have representational and rational properties: emotions represent states of affairs; and they are rationally related to other mental representations, figure in rational explanations of behavior, and are open to rational assessment. Emotions also have a close relationship to a range of non-intentional phenomena: in typical cases, emotions involve physiological changes, usually associated with the activation of the autonomic nervous system, which are proprioceptively experienced; and they often involve behavioral tendencies, as well.
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Product details

  • Hardback | 203 pages
  • 165.6 x 242.8 x 19.8mm | 512.57g
  • Dordrecht, Netherlands
  • English
  • 1992 ed.
  • XVII, 203 p.
  • 0792315499
  • 9780792315490

Table of contents

I Understanding Emotions.- 1. Introduction.- 2. Conceptual Coherence.- 3. Explanatory Value.- 4. Physical Realization.- 5. Conclusion.- The Intentionality of Emotions.- II Intentionality.- 1. Introduction.- 2. Representation.- 3. Rational Assessment.- 4. Rational Function.- 5. Representation and Rationality.- 6. Emotional Intentionality.- 7. Conclusion.- III Emotions and Belief.- 1. Introduction.- 2. The Extension of Belief.- 3. "Objectless Emotions".- 4. Cognitively Anomalous Emotions.- 5. Propositional Content.- 6. Conclusion.- IV Component Theories of Emotions.- 1. Introduction.- 2. Constitutive Phenomena and Derived Intentionality.- 3. Causal Relations.- 4. Emotional Intentionality.- 5. Dispositional Emotions.- 6. Conclusion.- V Evaluative Theories of Emotions.- 1. Introduction.- 2. Non-emotional Evaluations.- 3. Semantic Properties.- 4. Rationality.- 5. Desires and Desirability Judgments.- 6. Conclusion.- VI The Belief-Desire Theory of Emotions.- 1. Introduction.- 2. Intentional Structures.- 3. Basic Emotions.- 4. Semantic Assessment.- 5. Rationality.- 6. Elements and Compounds.- 7. Objections Considered.- 8. Conclusion.- The Economy of Mind.- VII Emotional Behavior.- 1. Introduction.- 2. Emotional Expression.- 3. Emotional Motivation.- 4. Conclusion.- VIII Emotional Affectivity.- 1. Introduction.- 2. Emotions and Sensations.- 3. Emotions and Perception.- 4. Hedonic States.- 5. Emotional Intensity.- 6. Experiential Emotions.- 7. Objections Considered.- 8. Conclusion.- Dimensions of Emotions.- IX Activity and Passivity.- 1. Introduction.- 2. Desire Dependence.- 3. Iterated Beliefs and Desires.- 4. Slavery to Desires.- 5. Deciding to Believe.- 6. Responsibility.- 7. Conclusion.- X Positive and Negative Emotions.- 1. Introduction.- 2. Drawing the Distinction.- 3. Emotional Opposition.- 4. The Differentiation of Emotions.- 5. Conclusion.- References.
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