David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Jack Alan Reynolds
Learn more about PhilPapers
Journal for the Theory of Social Behaviour 28 (3):223–235 (1998)
Are emotions like sneezes, unwilled, mechanical, or are they like judgments; are they entirely social constructions? Harré and Gillett believe that emotions are exclusively judgments. We argue that their view misses something important. Imagine a person quaking in anger. Both we and Harré and Gillett believe that he is angry only if he has made an implicit judgment, such as I have been transgressed against. But it is the quaking, not the judgment, that gives authenticity and force to the expression of anger. The quaking does not clarify what the actor means but rather it clarifies the relation of the actor to the meaning of his display. What makes it a genuine expression of anger and not a joke or performance is that the quaking is beyond the will. Bodily displays are not necessary to make expressions authentic; anything that shows that the expression is beyond the will will do, for instance, obsessive thoughts, intrusions, or an inability to concentrate. For Harré and Gillett emotions both as displays and feelings do not merely embody judgments but are also speech acts. We argue that an expression, a feeling or flitting through the mind, cannot be a speech act since only the overt can fit into the convention, the strictures of a community. Nor is the display merely a speech act. Since for an emotional display to be genuine it must slip from the lips unbidden. Further, a speech act account makes the emotions arbitrary; they imply that the set of possible emotions is open. We think, on the other hand, that only some sorts of judgments can become part of an emotion; judgments that relate to things that are important enough in a particular culture that judgment display and feeling are linked together involuntarily
|Keywords||No keywords specified (fix it)|
|Categories||categorize this paper)|
Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server
Configure custom proxy (use this if your affiliation does not provide a proxy)
|Through your library|
References found in this work BETA
No references found.
Citations of this work BETA
John Sabini & Maury Silver (2005). Ekman's Basic Emotions: Why Not Love and Jealousy? Cognition and Emotion 19 (5):693-712.
Similar books and articles
Kathryn Ann Johnson (2007). The Social Construction of Emotions in the Bhagavad Gītā. Journal of Religious Ethics 35 (4):655-679.
Keith Oatley & Philip N. Johnson-Laird (2011). Basic Emotions in Social Relationships, Reasoning, and Psychological Illnesses. Emotion Review 3 (4):424-433.
Jonathan Sterne & Joan Leach (2005). The Point of Social Construction and the Purpose of Social Critique. Social Epistemology 19 (2 & 3):189 – 198.
Maury Silver, Rosaria Conte, Maria Miceli & Isabella Poggi (1986). Humiliation: Feeling, Social Control and the Construction of Identity. Journal for the Theory of Social Behaviour 16 (3):269–283.
Maury Silver, John Sabini, W. Gerrod Parrott & Maury Silver (1987). Embarrassment: A Dramaturgic Account. Journal for the Theory of Social Behaviour 17 (1):47–61.
Rom Harré & Roy Bhaskar (eds.) (1990). Harré and His Critics: Essays in Honour of Rom Harré with His Commentary on Them. B. Blackwell.
John Sabini Andmaury Silver (1996). On the Possible Non-Existence of Emotions: The Passions. Journal for the Theory of Social Behaviour 26 (4):375–398.
Rom Harré (1997). Are Emotions Significant in Psychology Only as Motives? Journal for the Theory of Social Behaviour 27 (4):503–505.
John Sabini & Maury Silver (1980). Baseball and Hot Sauce: A Critique of Some Attributional Treatments of Evaluation. Journal for the Theory of Social Behaviour 10 (2):83–95.
Maury Silver & John Sabini (1978). The Social Construction of Envy. Journal for the Theory of Social Behaviour 8 (3):313–332.
Added to index2009-01-28
Total downloads17 ( #108,327 of 1,413,434 )
Recent downloads (6 months)1 ( #154,636 of 1,413,434 )
How can I increase my downloads?