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Grouping emotions, and culturally appropriate emotional responses
Posted: Posted July 15th by linguistcat
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Much like how different cultures group colors differently, what emotions were seen as related have been different across cultures and time.

Likewise, what is considered an acceptable or even expected response to an emotion changes across cultures as well. In the West, people might be expected to cry while mourning, especially at the funeral itself, but being stoic is also accepted; In other places, you aren't properly mourning at a funeral if you aren't wailing your despair to the heavens; In other places still, you might only cry in private. Even though in all these places grief is considered a heavy and bitter emotion, what you do with that emotion depends on your culture.

What are some interesting ways your cultures group emotions, especially more complex emotions and how they fit under umbrellas of more basic emotions? For example, "pity" in one culture might be seen as a type of sadness, and in another it's under the classification of love.

What are some specific responses to common emotions that are interesting or at least different than your own culture's usual/expected response?

There are 9 Replies


@linguistcat:
@Xhin:
Now I can reply as long as I’m not logged on!

———

@linguistcat:
I hadn’t thought about that before, but now I realize I need to.

I have had in the back of my mind the idea that the Arpien culture would regard pain as a good thing. Now that I’ve assigned that language to the Human natives of Ataivsh, I suppose I need to elaborate it.
Each of the four native sapient species of Ataivsh probably needs to have their own.

Adpihi and Reptigan also, it seems to me, might need to be different from my own RL natculture, especially in ways adaptive to their circumstances.
I’m pretty sure Adpihi on the one hand and Reptigan on the other need to be different from each other.
It seems there’s a good chance Early Adpihi on the one hand and Late Adpihi on the other also need to differ one from the other.

So now I’ve got some pondering to do!

Thanks 🙏!

Posted July 24th by chiarizio
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@Xhin:
@linguisrcat:
Now that I’ve posted a reply while not logged on, it seems I can follow up with a reply while logged on.

Either that, or Xhin fixed the bug while I was posting!


Posted July 24th by chiarizio
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May have accidentally logged you out or something while fixing the bug. Let me know if you can post while logged in now.

Posted July 24th by Xhin
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Xhin
Sky's the limit

May have accidentally logged you out or something while fixing the bug. Let me know if you can post while logged in now.

Yes, I did so in the post just before yours which I’ve just quoted.

Posted July 24th by chiarizio
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I'm glad I brought up something that got some gears turning. Let me know what you come up with when you do.

@chiarizio I'm assuming by "pain is good" you mean something like experiencing pain has a positive effect on the person and one shouldn't avoid it. If not, please let me know what's intended

Posted July 24th by linguistcat
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@linguistcat:

I'm glad I brought up something that got some gears turning. Let me know what you come up with when you do.


Will do!

@chiarizio I'm assuming by "pain is good" you mean something like experiencing pain has a positive effect on the person and one shouldn't avoid it. If not, please let me know what's intended


That, and other stuff. Maybe “pain is not bad” covers a lot of the other stuff.
I don’t mean sadomasochism, especially not sexual sadomasochism.
I mainly mean what you said.
But my thoughts are embryonic still, so subject to change.



Posted July 24th by chiarizio
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@linguistcat:
I think I remember from freshman psychology half a century ago, that for infants there are three dimensions, which for all I know may be binary for infants.
  • You’re either excited or calm.
  • Either you disapprove of some present item or circumstance, or you don’t.
  • Either you really like some present thing or condition, or you don’t.

    The older you get the more nuanced your emotional repertoire becomes.

    But let’s look at the combinations:
  • excited, wish something would go away or be different, and am enjoying something I have or can see or whatever.
    —— what the hell would one call this?

  • excited, wish something or someone would go away or change, and am not particularly pleased by anything present.
    —— angry, or vociferously sad, or something.

  • excited, no present thing or circumstance particularly displeases me, but something does meet with my enthusiastic approval.
    —— joy or happiness or glee or something.

  • excited, nothing particularly bothers me, nothing particularly pleases me.
    —— I don’t know. Curious? Bored? Can’t be sure either one fits!

  • calm, wish some current circumstance were different, also am glad of some other circumstance.
    —— partly content, partly not content. Patient about it either way.

  • calm, wish some current circumstance were different, nothing present at the moment particularly pleases me.
    —— quietly depressed, maybe? Or, patient.

  • calm, nothing here and now bothers me much, but I really like some person or item or state here and now.
    —— content.

  • calm, nothing here and now much bothers me, but nothing here and now much pleases me either.
    —— bored, probably ready for a nap.

    —————

    In “Inside Out” the emotions were:
    Joy aka happiness
    Sorrow aka sadness
    Anger
    Fear including anxiety
    Disgust

    But https://www.independent.co.uk/arts-entertainment/films/news/meet-the-inside-out-emotions-that-ended-up-on-pixars-cutting-room-floor-a6718291.html says
    Pride, Greed, Irritation, Shame, Gloom, Love and Hope were among the possible options



  • Posted August 2nd by chiarizio
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    Yeah, in the article, it mentioned that even experts had no consensus on how many "basic" emotions there are. Even knowing as we do now that emotions are moderated by certain neuro-transmitters, it's not 1 to 1 in that case and seems to be somewhat context dependent. There's also the theory that context+physical response are the main moderators of emotion, so you might feel the same things physically seeing an angry bear and the person you like (rapid heartbeat, shallow breathing, sweaty palms, etc) but easily recognize the emotion in response to the bear is fear and the response to your crush is love (or at least lust).

    But I think that's part of why emotions on the whole are pretty confusing, and that people can group them in various ways.

    As for how one is expected to react to a given emotion, once what the emotion is is deciphered, I think that comes down to a culture's ideals and values.

    Posted August 3rd by linguistcat
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    In “rational-emotive affect training”, one is taught that on average only about 20% of any “emotion” is actually hormones and neurohormones and bodily sensations and so on. They say that on average about 80% of any emotion is a thought; and you could probably express that thought as a sentence, if you put your mind to it.

    So that, squares quite thoroughly in my opinion, with what you say in your last post.
    (I actually think it would still support what you say even if emotion were more like 60% chemicals and sensations and 40% thought.)

    Edited August 3rd by chiarizio
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