Naturalized Aesthetics and Emotion Theory

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Abstract

Murray Smith’s proposal in Film, Art, and the Third Culture for a naturalized aesthetics is of interest to both film theorists and psychologists: for the former, it helps to elucidate how films work; for the latter, it provides concrete application cases of psychological theories. However, there are reasons for believing that the theory of emotions that Smith has adopted from psychology to ground his case studies—an extended version of basic emotions theory—is less well supported than he suggests. The available empirical evidence seems more compatible with the assumption that the different emotions are outputs of a single, integrated system.

Contributor Notes

Rainer Reisenzein is Professor of General Psychology at the University of Greifswald, Germany. His research focuses on theoretical and empirical questions related to emotion and motivation, and it is marked by an interdisciplinary orientation toward, in particular, philosophy and cognitive science. He is the author of numerous theoretical, review, and empirical articles and book chapters on diverse emotion-related topics, including emotional experience, emotion concepts, the facial expression of emotion, emotion measurement, cognitive emotion theory, and the history of emotion research. A special research focus of his is the phenomenon of surprise in humans considered from the perspective of emotion theory. He is on the editorial board of the journals Cognition and Emotion and Experimental Psychology and is an associate editor of the interdisciplinary journal Emotion Review. Email: rainer.reisenzein@uni-greifswald.de.

Projections

The Journal for Movies and Mind

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