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17

Yes and No By the standards of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorder (or DSM-IV in its current form), perhaps the most prominent all-in-one manual to assist physicians in accurately defining a patient's disorder, has specific criteria for a disorder, including: is associated with present distress (e.g., a painful symptom) or disability ...


15

Many single item measures of mood can be found in the literature. Those two are based on the idea that affect is bidimensional and that one's current state can be reported using a grid: Russell, J.A., Weiss, A., & Mendelsohn, G.A. (1989). Affect Grid: A Single-Item Scale of Pleasure and Arousal. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 57 (3), ...


14

The field that is doing this work you describe is sentiment analysis. From Wikipedia: A basic task in sentiment analysis is classifying the polarity of a given text at the document, sentence, or feature/aspect level — whether the expressed opinion in a document, a sentence or an entity feature/aspect is positive, negative, or neutral. Advanced, "beyond ...


11

Brinol et al (2009) suggest that your intuitions generalize. From the abstract: Building on the notion of embodied attitudes, we examined how body postures can influence self-evaluations by affecting thought confidence, a meta-cognitive process. Specifically, participants were asked to think about and write down their best or worse qualities while ...


10

First - you might want to redefine you search. Are you looking for happiness or rather positive affect? Happiness is fairly ambigious term, and it's much more associated with positive psychology studies on well-being. If you are interested in more global definition of happiness, check the work of Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi. On the other hand, there is a ...


10

I don't think you need to resort to hormonal or neural explanations. Staring has social meaning. The meaning of staring varies across cultures and contexts. In some contexts it is normal (e.g., staring at a presenter, staring at the person you are talking to, staring at a sales assistant). In these contexts, staring has meaning such as indicating interest or ...


10

People who kill themselves usually believe that they are in an unbearable situation from which they cannot escape and that things won't ever get better. The problem with research into the reasons for suicide is that those that successfuly killed themselves can no longer explain their motives, and those that survived might – consciously or unconsciously – ...


9

Smith and Kim's (2007) review article in the prestigious Psychological Bulletin titled "Comprehending Envy" might be a good starting point. They define envy as an unpleasant, often painful emotion characterized by feelings of inferiority, hostility, and resentment caused by an awareness of a desired attribute enjoyed by another person or group of ...


9

Mindfulness meditation can help reduce the intensity of emotional pain. This study explores this further. Even listening to music may help reduce the intensity of pain. Source Christopher A. Brown, Anthony K.P. Jones. Meditation experience predicts less negative appraisal of pain: Electrophysiological evidence for the involvement of anticipatory neural ...


8

Yes! The International Affective Picture System (IAPS) is widely used. From the IAPS instruction manual: The International Affective Picture System (IAPS) is being developed to provide a set of normative emotional stimuli for experimental investigations of emotion and attention. The goal is to develop a large set of standardized, ...


8

The classic reference for exactly what you are describing is Gilovich & Medvec, 1995 (LINK), the primary thesis of which is that "Actions, or errors of commission, generate more regret in the short term; but inactions, or errors of omission, produce more regret in the long run" (from the abstract). The authors explain that there are many factors that ...


8

I was about to recommend The Oxford Handbook of Social Neuroscience, by Decety and Cacioppo (Oxford University Press, 2011) which has an entire part (10 chapters) dedicated to the neural basis of emotion regulation, motivation, and social interactions. However, I just noticed Panksepp's forthcoming book, The Archaeology of Mind: Neuroevolutionary Origins of ...


8

Since things like happiness, sadness, and grief are highly subjective, so I don't think there's any way you could measure those variables directly. You could operationally define those emotions, such as measuring happiness by the number of hours someone spends doing something they enjoy, but you can imagine all of the confounds involved with that. Or, ...


8

The other answers cite minor effects related to your phenomena, but there's something more pervasive going on. In Carney et al's research report "Power Posing: Brief Nonverbal Displays Affect Neuroendocrine Levels and Risk Tolerance", it was found that "power posing" increases testosterone and cortisol levels which leads to, among other things, a greater ...


8

According to Hal Herzog, humans are the only animals that keep pets. Other animals have also kept pets however it was not under natural settings. These other "pet" relationships were observed in zoos, controlled experiments. etc. One the main reasons Herzog notes that humans are the only animals to keep pets is the idea of culture. Humans have evolved to ...


7

Well it depends what you mean by "field of study", but yes there is significant Cognitive Science research on Music and emotional arousal and/or brain activity. In particular Cognitive Neuroscience is most relevant to actually mapping brain activations involved with various forms of music appreciation and creation. A good study specifically on music and ...


7

I would search under the topic of affective computing especially in detecting and recognizing emotional information and then specialize on NLP methods in this area. Here are a few articles of interest: Visualizing the affective structure of a text document A model of textual affect sensing using real-world knowledge Saurus: an emotionally-weighted ...


7

Deconstructing your question There is a difference between the ability to experience an emotion and tendency to experience an emotion. There is a difference between proportion of time that an individual experiences an emotion and the intensity of that emotion. Obviously, you could take many approaches to answering this question. Emotions can be viewed from ...


7

Communication is always a lossy and inexact process. If I am trying to convey information to you - the times of trains, for example - I can use dates and times that I can be confident that you will interpret the same way I do. But you may not - I may say the train leaves at 8:40, and you assume I mean the morning, whereas I actually mean the evening. So ...


7

Sorry for the delay getting to an answer - the holidays have been super busy for me this year. If you feel up to it, definitely check out the link @ChuckSherrington posted in the comments. That has more information than you'll need for a while. Getting down to business: The answer to your question is both! Since your question assumes that both are ...


7

Probably the most striking evidence of "happiness homeostasis" is a now classic study by Brickman, Coates and Bulman (1978) which compared the self-reported happiness of lottery winners and accident victims with a control group. The following quote describes the part of the outcome you'd be interested in succinctly: Lottery winners and controls were not ...


7

There is indeed research done on the topic. Some links: http://www.thinkchildsafe.org/thinkbeforevisiting/ http://www.hsrc.ac.za/HSRC_Review_Article-195.phtml http://www.thinkchildsafe.org/thinkbeforevisiting/resources/Misguided_Kindness.pdf http://www.thinkchildsafe.org/thinkbeforevisiting/resources/UN%20Guidelines%20Alternative%20Care.pdf ...


7

But what about a human empathizing with less humanoid animals? Empathic responding towards humans is generalized to other species. The greater the similarity of the species towards humans, the larger is the empathic response. The findings support the notion that there is a relationship between human empathy directed towards other humans and human ...


7

It's from fear sprung out of the inability to clearly identify and interpret something and from that know how to react to it. There's something skewed with what you see, something deviating from your mental model of what a face (in this example) looks like. That makes us perceive it as something unknown, and what's unknown is also perceived as unpredictable ...


7

Electrodermal activity is an index of sympathetic activation and a skin conductance response can occur in many situations. It is therefore a very general response and can arise as a result of stimulus novelty or “significance” (whether you want to call this an affective response is up to you but it seems very different from common sense notions of what an ...


7

Laughter relieves stress and lightens the mood. Sources: Dugan, D. O. (1989). Laughter and tears: Best medicine for stress. Nursing Forum, 24, 18–26. doi:10.1111/j.1744-6198.1989.tb00814.x Toda, M., Kusakabe, S., Nagasawa, S., Kitamura, K., & Morimoto, K. (2007). Effect of laughter on salivary endocrinological stress marker chromogranin A. ...


7

As often in this area, the problem seems to be entirely created by confusions about definitions and terminology and the difficulties resulting from the use of common-sense concepts like “surprise” in scientific theories. One answer would be “Why not?” Basically you seem to object to the definition of surprise used by some theorists but definitions are ...


7

I think it can go both ways. According to Tesser's Self Evaluation Maintenance Theory, any two people in a relationship make themselves feel better by comparing themselves to each other. The key idea is that if you are closer to a person then you will tend to feel more jealous. For example, suppose your best friend got a really fancy car. You will naturally ...


7

The truth is that very few people who haven't seriously contemplated suicide, or who haven't dealt extensively with many people who have, really understand it. They will, like you, not figure it out, thinking there are so many other options available to them. It is even more puzzling when wealthy people, who have so many more options than most, do so, while ...



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