Izards Theory Of Emotions

American psychologist Carroll E. Izard"s (1923- ) approach to the study of emotions is influenced strongly by the evolutionary theory of Charles Darwin (1809-1882), who argued that certain basic patterns of emotional expression are part of one's biological inheritance. Such patterns of emotion evolved because of their high survival value in giving humans mutual and beneficial systems of communication. For example, humans - including nonhuman animals such as dogs and baboons - grimace and bare their teeth when they become threatened and, thus, convey their dispositions and level of arousal to others of the species. Izard's theory is called a differential emotions theory because it emphasizes 10 distinct and discriminable emotions: joy, excitement, anguish, rage, startle, revulsion, scorn, humiliation, remorse, and terror. To this list of distinctive emotions - including various other physiological and cognitive components of emotion - Izard adds the variable of facial expression for displaying emotional expressiveness and suggests that each of the specific emotions has its own separate facial pattern. For example, when one experiences rage, a specific pattern of muscle firings that is physiologically connected to anger "informs" the person's brain that it is rage that he/she is feeling and not some other emotion such as shame or fear. Thus, according to Izard's theory, facial patterning and facial muscle tension initiates, sustains, and increases one's experience of emotion, and the facial-muscular movement that occurs with each emotion is part of a biological and evolutionary program that is "wired" into the individual. Evolutionary emotion theories, such as Izard's and R. Plutchik's, hold that emotion evolved before thought and that emotions originate in subcortical brain structures (such as the limbic system and the hypothalamus), which evolved before the cortical areas that are associated with more complex thought. The principal goal of the neo-evolutionary theories of emotion is to come up with a list of the basic or primary emotions. Of course, not all theorists come up with the same list of emotional terms and concepts, but there is considerable overlap. See also DARWIN'S THEORY OF EMOTIONS; EKMAN-FRIESEN THEORY OF EMOTIONS; EMOTIONS, THEORIES/ LAWS OF; FACIAL-FEEDBACK HYPOTHESIS; LUDOVICI'S THEORY OF LAUGHTER; PLUTCHIK'S MODEL OF EMOTIONS. REFERENCES

Darwin, C. (1872). The expression of emotions in man and animals. London: Appleton.

York: Appleton-Century-Crofts. Izard, C. E. (1977). Human emotions. New

York: Plenum. Mandler, G. (1984). Mind and body. New

York: Norton. Plutchik, R. (1984). Emotions: A general psy-choevolutionary theory. In K. Scherer & P. Ekman (Eds.), Approaches to emotion. Hillsdale, NJ: Erlbaum.

Izard, C. E. (1990). The substrata and function of emotional feeling: William James and current theory. Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin, 16, 625635.

Mesquita, B., & Frijda, N. (1992). Cultural variations in emotions: A review. Psychological Bulletin, 112, 179204.

Izard, C. E. (1994). Innate and universal facial expressions: Evidence from developmental and cross-cultural research. Psychological Bulletin, 115, 288-299.

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