The conceptualization of emotions across cultures: a model based on interoceptive neuroscience

Zhou, Pin, Critchley, Hugo, Garfinkel, Sarah and Gao, Ya (2021) The conceptualization of emotions across cultures: a model based on interoceptive neuroscience. Neuroscience and Biobehavioral Reviews, 125. pp. 314-327. ISSN 0149-7634

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Mental processes are recognized to be embodied, hence dependent upon functions of the body. Interoception (i.e., the sense of the internal bodily physiology) underpinning motivational states and emotional feelings, however, are mostly ignored within present sensory-motor accounts of embodiment. The inclusion of interoception within models of embodiment is important both for health psychology and for theories of cognition. Here, we deduce that reference to visceral organs, in language describing emotion concepts, should be viewed as metonymy (i.e., the mental mapping wherein a component is used to describe the whole), rather than metaphor (i.e., one familiar and concrete concept used to describe another unfamiliar and/or abstract concept that shares some similarities). This view contrasts with a dominant assumption within cognitive linguistics. We further argue that conceptual differences in the assumption about the body-mind-emotion relationship or emotional somatization, evident when comparing Chinese to standard English, is culturally and cognitively determined (e.g., by divergent Western and Chinese philosophical, medical traditions and meaning systems). We propose a new model in which two contending variables, bodily transparency and cognitive granularity, define cultural differences in emotion conceptualization, capturing the dynamic multidimensional interaction between body, mind, brain, language, and society.

Item Type: Article
Keywords: conceptualization, cross-cultural study, embodied semantics, emotion, health psychology, interoceptive neuroscience
Schools and Departments: Brighton and Sussex Medical School > Neuroscience
SWORD Depositor: Mx Elements Account
Depositing User: Mx Elements Account
Date Deposited: 12 Mar 2021 08:22
Last Modified: 12 Mar 2021 08:30

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