Embodied Emotions: A Naturalist Approach to a Normative by Rebekka Hufendiek

By Rebekka Hufendiek

In this publication, Rebekka Hufendiek explores feelings as embodied, action-oriented representations, offering a non-cognitivist idea of feelings that money owed for his or her normative dimensions. Embodied Emotions focuses not just at the physically reactions concerned about feelings, but additionally at the atmosphere during which feelings are embedded and at the social personality of this surroundings, its ontological structure, and how it scaffolds either the improvement of specific emotion kinds and the unfolding of person emotional episodes. moreover, it offers a serious overview and appraisal of present empirical reports, mostly in psychophysiology and developmental psychology, that are relevant to discussions approximately even if feelings are embodied in addition to socially embedded. the speculation that Hufendiek places ahead denies the excellence among easy and better cognitive feelings: all feelings are embodied, action-oriented representations. This process can account for the complicated normative constitution of feelings, and stocks the benefits of cognitivist bills of feelings with no sharing their difficulties. Embodied feelings makes an unique contribution to ongoing debates at the normative elements of feelings and should be of curiosity to philosophers engaged on feelings, embodied cognition and located cognition, in addition to neuroscientists or psychologists who examine feelings and have an interest in putting their very own paintings inside a broader theoretical framework.

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If we take the distinction between the two modes of meaning generation seriously, we can believe contradictory things simultaneously—for example, that flying in an airplane is safe and that it is also very dangerous” (Lazarus 1991, 159). Both answers are problematic. The first one is problematic because emotions can occur together with a further judgment that judges them to be inappropriate, as in Hume’s example of a person in a cage who is afraid of the depth although he knows that he cannot fall.

A common suggestion to capture the “particular way” in which emotions make their objects appear is to introduce for each emotion type a formal object. The claim is that for all emotions E, E represents the formal object of E (as instantiated by some material object O; Scarantino 2010). To assign a formal object to an action means to place restrictions on what may occur as the direct object of a verb describing the action. “Only colored things can be seen” is an example where “colored things” are the formal object of the act of seeing.

4 Therefore, the phenomenal aspect looks more like a superfluous add-on than an essential component. What is characteristic and interesting Cognitivism and the Normative Dimension of Emotions 35 about emotions, though, is that the evaluation of a situation and the particular feeling appear to be inseparable. Emotions can be described as pleasurable or painful evaluations, where their special character is exactly the coincidence of the two elements (Helm 2001). Classical cognitivism frequently seems to forget about the phenomenology altogether, and when it is added to the theory, it remains unclear what the role of the phenomenal aspect of emotions is.

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