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5.1f.1.2. Perceptual Theories of Emotion (Perceptual Theories of Emotion on PhilPapers)

Brady, Michael S. (2010). Virtue, emotion, and attention. Metaphilosophy 41 (1):115-131.   (Google)
Abstract: Abstract: The perceptual model of emotions maintains that emotions involve, or are at least analogous to, perceptions of value. On this account, emotions purport to tell us about the evaluative realm, in much the same way that sensory perceptions inform us about the sensible world. An important development of this position, prominent in recent work by Peter Goldie amongst others, concerns the essential role that virtuous habits of attention play in enabling us to gain perceptual and evaluative knowledge. I think that there are good reasons to be sceptical about this picture of virtue. In this essay I set out these reasons, and explain the consequences this scepticism has for our understanding of the relation between virtue, emotion, and attention. In particular, I argue that our primary capacity for recognizing value is in fact a non-emotional capacity
Charland, Louis C. (1995). Feeling and representing: Computational theory and the modularity of affect. Synthese 105 (3):273-301.   (Cited by 7 | Google | More links)
Abstract:   In this paper I review some leading developments in the empirical theory of affect. I argue that (1) affect is a distinct perceptual representation governed system, and (2) that there are significant modular factors in affect. The paper concludes with the observation thatfeeler (affective perceptual system) may be a natural kind within cognitive science. The main purpose of the paper is to explore some hitherto unappreciated connections between the theory of affect and the computational theory of mind
Charland, Louis C. (1997). Reconciling cognitive and perceptual theories of emotion: A representational proposal. Philosophy of Science 64 (4):555-579.   (Cited by 12 | Google | More links)
D'arms, Justin (2008). Prinz's theory of emotion. Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 76 (3):712-719.   (Google)
DeLancey, Craig (2005). Review of Jesse J. Prinz, Gut Reactions: A Perceptual Theory of Emotion. Notre Dame Philosophical Reviews 2005 (10).   (Google)
Deonna, Julien A. (2006). Emotion, perception and perspective. Dialectica 60 (1):29–46.   (Google | More links)
Goldie, Peter (2004). Emotion, feeling, and knowledge of the world. In Robert C. Solomon (ed.), Thinking About Feeling: Contemporary Philosophers on Emotions. Oxford University Press.   (Cited by 3 | Google)
Abstract: There is a view of the emotions (I might tendentiously call it ‘cognitivism’) that has at present a certain currency. This view is of the emotions as playing an essential role in our gaining evaluative knowledge of the world. When we are angry at an insult, or afraid of the burglar, our emotions involve evaluative perceptions and thoughts, which are directed towards the way something is in the world that impinges on our well-being, or on the well-being of those that matter to us. Without emotions, we would be worse off, prudentially and morally: we would not see things as they are, and accordingly we would not act as we should. Emotions are, according to this view a Good Thing. No wonder we have evolved as creatures capable of emotion.[1]
Griffiths, Paul E. (2008). Jesse Prinz Gut reactions: A perceptual theory of emotion. British Journal for the Philosophy of Science 59 (3).   (Google)
Prinz, Jesse (online). Emotion and aesthetic value.   (Google)
Abstract: Aesthetics is a normative domain. We evaluate artworks as better or worse, good or bad, great or grim. I will refer to a positive appraisal of an artwork as an aesthetic appreciation of that work, and I refer to a negative appraisal as aesthetic depreciation. (I will often drop the word “aesthetic.”) There has been considerable amount of work on what makes an artwork worthy of appreciation, and less, it seems, on the nature of appreciation itself. These two topics are related, of course, because they nature of appreciation may bear on what things are worthy of that response, or at least on what things are likely to elicit it. So I will have some things to say about the latter. But I want to focus in this discussion on appreciation itself. When we praise a work of art, when we say it has aesthetic value, what does our praise consist in? This is a question about aesthetic psychology. I am interested in what kind of mental state appreciation is. What kind of state are we expressing when we say a work of art is “good”? This question has parallels in other areas of value theory. In ethics, most notably, there has been much attention lavished on the question of what people express when they refer to an action as “morally good.” One popular class of theories, associated with the British moralists and their followers, posits a link between moral valuation and emotion. To call an act morally good is to express an emotion toward that act. I think this approach to morality is right on target (Prinz, 2007). Here I want to argue that an emotional account of aesthetic valuation is equally promising. There are important differences between the two domains, but both have an affective foundation. I suspect that valuing of all kinds involves the emotions. Here I will inquire into the role of emotions in aesthetic valuing. I will not claim that artworks express emotions or even that they necessarily evoke emotions..
Prinz, Jesse (2004). Emotions embodied. In R. Solomon (ed.), Thinking About Feeling: Contemporary Philosophers on Emotions. Oxford University Press.   (Cited by 1 | Google)
Abstract: In one of the most frequently quoted passages in the history of emotion research, William James (1884: 189f) announces that emotions occur when the perception of an exciting fact causes a collection of bodily changes, and “our feeling of the same changes as they occur IS the emotion.” The same idea occurred to Carl Lange (1984) around the same time. These authors were not the first to draw a link between the emotions and the body. Indeed, this had been a central theme of Descartes’ exquisite opus, The Passions of the Soul. But James and Lange wanted to push things farther than most, suggesting that emotions are exhausted by bodily changes or perceptions thereof. Other kinds of mental episodes might co-occur when we have an emotion state. For James, an emotion follows an exciting perception. But the exciting perception is not a part of the emotion it excited (Ellsworth, 1994, reads James differently, but see Reisenzein et al.’s 1995 convincing response). The majority of contemporary emotion researchers, especially those in philosophy, find this suggestion completely untenable. Surely, emotions involve something more. At their core, emotions are more like judgments or thoughts, than perceptions. They evaluate, assess, or appraise. Emotions are amendable to rational assessment; they report, correctly or incorrectly, on how we are faring in the world. Within this general consensus, there is a further debate about whether the body should figure into a theory of emotions at all. Perhaps James and Lange offer a theory that is not merely incomplete, but entirely off base. Where they view judgments as contingent and non-constitutive concomitants of emotions, it is actually bodily perceptions that deserve this demotion. Perhaps emotions can be, and often are, disembodied in some fundamental sense
Prinz, Jesse J. (2004). Gut Reactions: A Perceptual Theory of the Emotions. Oxford University Press.   (Cited by 57 | Google)
Abstract: Gut Reactions is an interdisciplinary defense of the claim that emotions are perceptions of changes in the body.
Prinz, Jesse J. (2008). Is emotion a form of perception? In Luc Faucher & Christine Tappolet (eds.), The Modularity of Emotions. University of Calgary Press.   (Google)
Prinz, Jesse (2008). Précis of Gut reactions. Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 76 (3):707–711.   (Google | More links)
Reisenzein, Rainer (2009). Emotions as metarepresentational states of mind: Naturalizing the belief-desire theory of emotion. Cognitive Systems Research 10:6-20.   (Google)
Reisenzein, Rainer (2009). Emotional experience in the computational belief-desire theory of emotion. Emotion Review 1:214-222.   (Google)
Sneddon, Andrew (2008). Two views of emotional perception. In Luc Faucher & Christine Tappolet (eds.), The Modularity of Emotions. University of Calgary Press.   (Google)
Tappolet, Christine, Emotions, perceptions, and emotional illusions.   (Google)
Abstract: Emotions often misfire. We sometimes fear innocuous things, such as spiders or mice, and we do so even if we firmly believe that they are innocuous. This is true of all of us, and not only of phobics, who can be considered to suffer from extreme manifestations of a common tendency. We also feel too little or even sometimes no fear at all with respect to very fearsome things, and we do so even if we believe that they are fearsome. Indeed, instead of shunning fearsome things, we might be attracted to them. Emotions that seem more thought-involving, such as shame, guilt or jealousy, can also misfire. You can be ashamed of your big ears even though we can agree that there is nothing shameful in having big ears, and even though you judge that having big ears does not warrant shame. And of course, it is also possible to experience too little or even no shame at all with respect to something that is really shameful. Many of these cases involve a conflict between one’s emotion and one’s evaluative judgement. Emotions that are thus conflicting with judgement can be called ‘recalcitrant emotions’. The question I am interested in is whether or not recalcitrant emotions amount to emotional illusions, that is, whether or not these cases are sufficiently similar to perceptual illusions to justify the claim that they fall under the same general heading. The answer to this depends on what emotions are. For instance, the view that emotions are evaluative judgments makes it difficult to make room for the claim that emotional errors are perceptual illusions. Fearing an innocuous spider would simply amount to making the error of judging that the spider is fearsome while it is in fact innocuous. This might involve an illusion of some sort, but it certainly does not amount to anything like a perceptual illusion. In this chapter, I argue that recalcitrant emotions are a kind of perceptual illusion..