Gut Reactions: A Perceptual Theory of Emotion

Paperback | July 15, 2006

byJesse J. Prinz

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Gut Reactions is an interdisciplinary defense of the claim that emotions are perceptions in a double sense. First of all, they are perceptions of changes in the body, but, through the body, they also allow us to literally perceive danger, loss, and other matters of concern. This proposal,which Prinz calls the embodied appraisal theory, reconciles the long standing debate between those who say emotions are cognitive and those who say they are noncognitive. The basic idea behind embodied appraisals is captured in the familiar notion of a "gut reaction," which has been overlooked bymuch emotion research. Prinz also addresses emotional valence, emotional consciousness, and the debate between evolutionary psychologists and social constructionists.

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Gut Reactions is an interdisciplinary defense of the claim that emotions are perceptions in a double sense. First of all, they are perceptions of changes in the body, but, through the body, they also allow us to literally perceive danger, loss, and other matters of concern. This proposal,which Prinz calls the embodied appraisal theory,...

Jesse Prinz is Associate Professor of Philosophy at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. He is the author of Furnishing the Mind, in which he defends the view that all concepts have their basis in perception, and two forthcoming titles. In The Emotional Basis of Morals, he argues that moral concepts essentially involve emo...

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Format:PaperbackDimensions:288 pages, 6.1 × 9.21 × 0.79 inPublished:July 15, 2006Publisher:Oxford University PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0195309367

ISBN - 13:9780195309362

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Table of Contents

1. Introduction: Piecing Passions Apart2. Feeling Without Thinking3. Embodied Appraisals4. Basic Emotions and Nature5. Emotions and Nature6. Emotions and Nurture7. Valence8. A Typology of Affective States9. Emotional Consciousness10. Is Getting Mad Like Seeing Red?Coda: Parting WaysReferencesIndex

Editorial Reviews

"Jesse Prinz's wide-ranging knowledge of the cognitive sciences makes this book a watershed contribution to the field of emotion research. His embodied appraisal theory, which attempts to mediate between recent neurobiological approaches and the cognitive theories that have dominatedphilosophical thinking, is a major step forward in the debate. Because Prinz builds his case on a richly detailed account of empirical research, I recommend this as the book to read on the renaissance of emotion in the last two decades, in neuroscience and psychology as well as philosophy."--RobertM. Gordon, University of Missouri, St. Louis