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The Ascent of AffectGenealogy and Critique$
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Ruth Leys

Print publication date: 2017

Print ISBN-13: 9780226488424

Published to Chicago Scholarship Online: May 2018

DOI: 10.7208/chicago/9780226488738.001.0001

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The Debate Continues

The Debate Continues

Paradigm Change or Status Quo?

(p.266) Chapter Six The Debate Continues
The Ascent of Affect

Ruth Leys

University of Chicago Press

This chapter addresses the question as to whether Alan Fridlund's interventions, as well as the contributions of others who have recently criticized Ekman's model of the emotions, herald a paradigm change in the emotion field or whether instead business as usual prevails, in the sense that the affect program theory continues to dominate the field. In order to understand the current situation, certain features of Fridlund's position are defined, features that, in his own words, make it a "tough sell" even if they reflect something incontestably right about his arguments. In order to throw further light on these issues, the recent writings of the author Paul Griffiths and his colleague Andrea Scarantino are discussed. Both offer a spirited defense of the basic emotion approach. It is suggested that their writings are interesting because they reveal how fundamental is the need to deflate claims about the intentionality of the emotions by retheorizing the intentional behaviors emphasized by Fridlund in non-intentional terms. How successful these authors are in this effort at retheorization is another matter.

Keywords:   audience effects, Lisa Feldman Barrett, Alan J. Fridlund, homology, Machiavellian expressions, psychological constructionism, Paul E. Griffiths, Brian Parkinson, James A. Russell, Andrea Scarantino

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