Emotions on a Spectrum

What I think I appreciated most from Evans’ articles on emotion in our society was his ability to put emotions on a spectrum instead of having to put them into categories or see them in black and white. He talks about “basic” emotions versus “culturally specific emotions” versus “higher cognitive emotions” and explains that they need not be placed in different categories, but simply seen as different points on a spectrum that exists based on how innate the emotion is. I appreciated this because something that bothers me a lot about how some people reason is how they figure that if something isn’t “A” it has to be “B,” and vice versa. I think this stems on our desire for things to exist and be explained simply. I also appreciated all the scientific logic he used to back up his claims, which not only made it more credible but also made it easier to understand. He links emotions to natural selection and somehow makes it easy to understand. His mention and discussion of Aristotle’s “golden mean” spoke to me because it reflects my constant battle between acting on the middle ground between my gut feeling and reason. Though I didn’t find Gastle’s piece of the historical events that affected/found their way into Middle English literature, whether blatantly or not, quite as intellectually stimulating as I did Evans’ pieces, I did appreciate learning about some of the historic events that took place during the era we’re focusing on.

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