Thursday, September 10, 2015

Positive view of emotion

Since the time of Plato, emotions have been viewed by many Western philosophers as obstacles to reason and intelligent thinking. Emotions are vital for intelligent action. According to the positive view of emotion, a creature that lacked emotion would actually be less intelligent than human.

The idea has not been popular among philosophers and psychologists, but considerations drawn from evolutionary theory and neuroscience seem to add support to the positive view. A combination of reason and emotion seems to be important to intelligent action.

As early as 1960, Orval Hobart Mowrer concluded that the emotions, ‘do not at all deserve being put in opposition with ‘intelligence ….they are it seems a high order of intelligence.’

Around this time the idea that there was such a thing as emotional intelligence was beginning to crop up in variety of different fields including literary criticism and psychiatry.

Credit for first coining the actual term ‘emotional intelligence’ in psychology is often given to Wayne Leon Payne. In 1985 he published his doctoral thesis title A Study of Emotion: Developing Emotional Intelligence.
Positive view of emotion


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