Précis: The Emotional Mind: The Affective Roots of Culture and Cognition

Journal of Philosophy of Emotion 2 (2):1-7 (2021)
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An affective approach to culture and cognition may hold the key to uniting findings across experimental psychology and, eventually, the human sciences. Many accounts of the human mind concentrate on the brain’s computational power, yet for nearly 200 million years before humans developed a capacity to reason the emotional centers of the brain were running the show. To attain a clearer picture of the evolution of mind, we challenge the cognitivist and behaviorist paradigms in psychology by exploring how the emotional capacities that we share with other animals saturate every thought and perception. Many of the distinctive social and cultural behaviors of our species, including, bonding, social learning, hierarchy, decision-making, self-identity, can be integrated if we use an affective approach.



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Stephen Asma
Columbia College Chicago

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