SOC327 2017 Tut2 – Wed 1730

We have long conceived of a separation between mind and body in western society, with supremacy of mind over body. This basic idea that reason should dominate is captured in the classic statement by Descartes ‘cogito ergo sum’, ‘I think, therefore I am’. However, if your thoughts are affected by your bodily feelings, or even your perceptions of how the society around you sees you, then what are you? What are your thoughts? Are they really separate from your body and your feelings? And do we have a better understanding of the relationship between reason and emotion as a society today? Compare Disney’s take on the role of emotions in human action in 1943 and in 2015 (and note that the producers of the 2015 ‘Inside Out’ film considered including ‘logic’ as an emotion, but later decided to drop it). Which of these depictions makes more sense to you?

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  1. When comparing the difference between thoughts and feelings, a lot of questions arise. It is a complicated notion. Where both go hand in hand together. Feelings can control your thoughts. Thoughts are responsible for your feelings. The idea of separation between the two is a hard one to grasp. I could be feeling very upset about something and therefore have negative thoughts. However, I could then start trying to think positively about something which could change my emotions into happier ones. When comparing Disneys take on emotions in 1943 to 2015 there are noticeably different conceptions bought to the table. 1943’s idea only includes two major characters in one’s head. Reason and Emotion. 2015’s take include’s a larger variation of these things with anger, joy, sadness, disgust and fear. However, they chose to eliminate their 6th character Reason. They chose to make the protagonist Riley ‘Separate’ from her emotions. Unlike the 1943 approach. I think thoughts are a separate thing to body and feelings. Your thoughts are your inner conscious. I could have feelings of anger and want to burst and break things and scream. But my thoughts and reason would tell me to stop and not do those things. Again that is society influencing those idea’s. Having a tantrum wouldn’t be seen socially acceptable. Even though my primal instinct would be to do so.

  2. There are a few arguments that make me support the 2015 approach more than the one from 1945. Both have the idea of emotions as being inherent, in 1945 portrayed very irrational, instinctive and all in one character. It definitely goes towards the idea of emotion as disruptive and that it “may distract persons from their purposes” (Barbalet p. 31). There is definitely an imense negative touch to emotion, which is being dragged on until the end, where finally an interaction between the two is proposed as the most efficient way. It seems like a transformation to the critical approach in the end, where “reason and rationality require emotional guidance” (Barbalet p. 39) to have an united outcome. I don’t agree with the conflict between “reason” and this unique “emotion”, because the emotional variety is very wide and all of them might have more, less or none conflict potential. That’s why I can identify with the 2015 version a little better, the characters/emotions might be “anger” or “fear” and might be seen in general as a negative aspect, but they all have a right and purpose to exist. But like I already mentioned in my twitter comment, it feels like the individual emotions from 2015 are largely influenced by Freud’s idea that it leads back to our biological instincts (Barbalet p. 34). The character/emotion “logic”, which was sorted out afterwards shows similarities to Hume’s definition of reason: “[…] reason is itself constituted of particular emotions” (Barbaleit p. 31). When I think of myself that makes a lot of sense, because I have the impression it is an calm passion/emotion in us that sets up the rational calculation and the pro/con discussion. #SOC327UOW17 #Tut2 #Wed1730

  3. There are a few reasons that make me support the 2015 approach more than the one from 1945. Both have the idea of emotions as being inherent, in 1945 portrayed very irrational, instinctive and all in one character. It definitely goes towards the idea of emotion as disruptive and that it “may distract persons from their purposes” (Barbalet p. 31). There is definitely an imense negative touch to emotion, which is being dragged on until the end, where finally an interaction between the two is proposed as the most efficient way. It seems like a transformation to the critical approach in the end, where “reason and rationality require emotional guidance” (Barbalet p. 39). I don’t agree with the conflict between “reason” and this unique “emotion”, because the emotional variety is very wide and all of them might have more, less or none conflict potential. That’s why I can identify with the 2015 version a little better, the characters/emotions might be “anger” or “fear” and might be seen in general as a negative aspect, but they all have a right and purpose to exist. Like I already mentioned in my comment on twitter I see a similarty of the emotions from 2015 and Freud’s idea of emotions as an biological instinct (Barbalet p. 34). But the emotion logic/reason that was not in the final movie supports Hume’s definition of reason: “[…]Reason itself ist constituted of particular emotions” (Barbaleit p. 31). When I think about my own point of view I feel like it is a calm emotion/passion that sets up the pro and contra discussion and the rational calculations.

  4. The 2015 depiction of emotions makes more sense to me although it is overall and extremely complicated concept which I find hard to wrap my head around. The supremacy of the mind in western society is valid as there is a disconnect from how your emotions can overtake your body. I for one did not really begin to think about the connection and influence your thoughts/emotions can have until the beginning of this class. You are brought up consistently being taught how to keep your emotions in check. As a young child it is acceptable for outbursts of anger and sadness yet as an adult you must deduce reason from these emotions and control them or they are viewed as unacceptable and in turn some adult emotions are seen as negative and a burden to your everyday life. In response to the producers dropping logic as an emotion I personally do not believe that logic is an emotion. Instead I believe that logic is derived from the societal standards around you- logic for one person may be illogical for the next. I do relate to the theory that all humans are born with a basis of the same emotions yet the expressions of those emotions and the emotions themselves are moulded and by different societal standards and differing time periods – hence why the concepts portrayed in Disney’s take on emotions in 1943 is (for me) less relatable.

  5. When comparing Disney’s interpretation of the role of emotions in human action in ‘Reason and Emotion’ (1943) and ‘Inside Out’ (2015), I concluded that ‘Inside Out’ portrayed a better understanding of reason and emotion within modern society. In Disney’s 1943 ‘Reason and Emotion’ it demonstrated notions from the Conventional Approach which is connected to Rene Descartes phrase “I think before I am”, which is a view considered widely acceptable within western society (Barbalet 1998, p. 33). Barbalet suggested that in the Conventional Approach, emotion is seen to subvert reason, so the best option is to supress emotion so reason is in control. (Barbalet 1998, p. 33). An example of this split in Disney’s 1943 ‘Reason and Emotion’ is when the male character’s emotion is expressing feelings about the female character, but the male character’s reason takes control and suggests that it is not respectful to think of her in that way. Whereas the ‘Inside Out’ interpretation of emotions made much more sense as it took more of a Radical and Critical Approach, where emotion is not opposed to reason and emotion is seen to solve problems reason cannot. (Barbalet 1998, p. 52). Inside Out suggests that for an individual to make rational decisions, a sense of emotion is needed.

  6. An implicit question was put forward in Jack Barbalet ‘s (p. 34) discussion of the conventional approach: ‘If I am because I think, am I undone because I feel?’ This distinction between mind/rationality/objectivity and body/emotions/subjectivity is an artificial ideal that serves to perpetuate both the power dynamics within society, and the divisions of labour present within its capitalist structure. As Barbalet (p. 30) points out, “the actual opposition of emotions and reason is much less durable than the idea of that opposition”. Rational outcomes ensue when reason and emotion are able to work in tandem with each other. William James (p. 45-6) speaks of rationality as an emotional configuration that allows fluency of thought. Therefore, emotions and reason must become confluent to allow rational action. As Ronald de Sousa (p. 39) discussed, emotion gives purpose and direction to thought– “inherent in a goal is an emotion”. Towards the end of what basically became a weird propaganda film, Disney (1943) began to evoke emotions – like pride in one’s country, happiness in one’s freedom and bliss in one’s living – that are able to work constructively towards the rational end-goal of democracy (“…and together you must be grimly determined to fight against all odds”). Note here that rationality is a sociocentric concept. While Disney’s 2015 ‘Inside Out’ definitely makes more sense to me in its depiction of emotion’s role in human action than its 1943 attempt, both films seem to move towards the same conclusion: a foundation of emotion is needed for rational behaviour.

  7. Both our thoughts and emotions go hand in hand, they are both interdependent and influence each other greatly. After watching both the 1943 and 2015 depiction of the roles of emotion, I came to terms that the 2015 understanding made much more sense to me.
    In the Disney’s ‘Reason and Emotion’, only two elements were present which showed us what damage we may be able to cause if we were to let our emotions get the better of us and take control of our logic and reasoning. This depiction embodied the conventional approach, which Barbalet explained as revealing that emotion is opposed to rationality. However, within the 2015 film ‘Inside Out’, there were multiple different elements rather than just two. These included; joy, sadness, fear, disgust and anger. This take on emotion and thought, to me seemed much more realistic, even without logic being an emotion in the film. In a sense it revealed how emotion and rationality may work together rather than separately. This can be supported by Barbalet (1998, p. 29) who noted that emotion and reason can be viewed by the critical approach “in which emotion supports rationality by providing it with salience and goal formation”. Our emotions impact our logical understanding and our ability to make logical decisions. These decisions and choices we make, depend heavily upon how we may feel or how we might react. For example, a particular decision may need to be made where an individual is aware that there are negative consequences to the decision. In response to these negative consequences an individual may feel sad, regret, guilt or fearful, therefore they may make the conscious decision to not go through with it, therefore being logical and doing the right thing. I don’t believe that an individuals emotions and sense of reason are opposed, but rather as Barbalet (1998, p.38) noted “their differences allow each to serve in a division of labor in which their distinct capacities contribute to a unified outcome”.

    #S327UOW17 #Tut2 #Wed1730

  8. Originally, I would agree that the mind is separate from the body. Think about when your mind tells you not to do something but then you’re body feels inclined to do it, or tempted to do it, and goes against your gut feeling and thoughts. In this case I believe the two objects can be separate entities. However, there is a correlation between the two. After watching the ted talk, I can say I strongly agree with the idea that the interactions our bodies encounter can effect our feelings and emotions drastically. For example, If I go for a long tiresome run, I am more likely to feel exhausted. Or if I have a terrible fight with a friend or family member, I am more likely to feel upset or drained. I believe our everyday actions and experiences shape the way we feel and think, so in this case, I believe the mind and body are very much related.

    When watching Disney’s 1943 take on emotion, I began to question the idea that children only have emotion and no reason. To me, I believe kids are very much driven by their emotions, however these emotions and learning from them create reason, and cause them to feel the need to act on their emotions. I believe emotions give people reason. For example the emotion of feeling hungry gives a child the reasoning to ask one’s parents for food, or the idea of using their manners in order to get what they want.

    I believe the movie Inside Out has a much more realistic and up to date approach on reason and emotion. In this movie, the main character is a young girl who is undergoing a move from home and follows her learning process on how to balance her emotions with reason. The movie helps portray how emotions counteract with actions and reason. For example, when she is worried she feels more inclined to be careful with her choices and decisions, whereas when she is angry she feels more inclined to fight with her parents or act out. I think this is a much more accurate representation of the relationship between emotions and reasoning. This relates to the idea brought up in this weeks reading of the philosophical idea formed by combined ideas of Kant and Descartes that “what one does must be consequence of what one thinks” (pg. 33) This idea correlates with the idea that our actions are driven by our thoughts which are in turn caused by our emotions.
    It’s fair to say the mind and body are two separate things, however, I believe they are both related in the idea that the body’s actions can cause our emotions to change and our emotions can lead to various actions.

  9. The mind and body split is a complex discourse attracting much attention across time. Whilst the body, that is reason, has historically taken priority over emotion – as evidenced by Wartime Disney – the extent to which such is accepted today is questionable. Indeed, the 2015 Disney Pixar film, ‘Inside Out,’ appears to stress the importance of emotion and the mind over the body. By personifying each of the emotions within the mind, the film brings to life the immediate emotional responses and different thought processes that occur before we rationally use our body to act. Indeed, for thought and emotion to be the immediate trigger in brain functioning, we are seemingly controlled by emotion. This reflects the historical approach of Romans and Christians in that their perception of the mind-body split places the soul above the body. Indeed, Plato pursued the idea that the body is the ‘tomb of the soul’ and that the mind and body are like two horses pulling in opposite directions. His dualism between the mind and body ensures that within this interconnection, emotion is a somewhat automatic response, yet the actions of the body are controlled and never emotional or impulsive. On this analysis, it is clear to see why acting on emotion and without reason can lead to irrational and sometimes regrettable decisions. The body is required to monitor and restrain impulsive acts.

    What is perhaps more interesting is the way in which as we mature and develop, reason ensures that we act appropriately within any social context. Apparent even in the 1943 Disney clip, this analysis suggests that both mind and body are part of the same function of decision making. Darwin provides an alternative to Plato in that through survival of the fittest, the body must reason to ensure proper evolution through natural selection. Without reason, irrational decisions may be made. Weber (Barbalet, 1998) suggests that for an act to be rational, the result must be ‘clearly conscious and intended’ with the means to achieve that end applied on the basis of clear knowledge. He suggests emotion, by contrast, is inherently irrational as it is ‘compulsive and disruptive.’ On the implication that emotion creates disorder and rationality brings order in society, this conventional approach advocated by Disney in 1943 is easy to comprehend.

    However as Barbalet (1998) purports, emotion may be perceived as a solution to the problems that rationality cannot solve. Perhaps instead of mind and body being opposites, they are actually intertwined in such a way to encourage a unified outcome. This critical approach seems to be explored by Disney more recently in ‘Inside Out,’ by personifying the five basic emotions (joy, sadness, anger, fear and disgust) of a young girl. By focusing on the emotions involved in any given action, one can comprehend how emotions work together to make rational decisions. Perhaps Disney is pushing then towards a radical approach, like that advanced by James (1956) which suggests that the use of the mind is separate to that of the body, despite being along the same trajectory. Luhmann’s argument resonates with me most in arguing that it is important to distinguish between emotion and rationality both in present and future decision making because it is the trust emerging out of one’s past experiences that plays an essential part in future reactions both in mind and body functioning.

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  10. When looking at the relationship between the mind and the body, I believe it is quite obvious that they are connected and work together as one. I believe the more we think about the concept, the more unrealistic and unnecessary the ideas of how the two work become. The fact that neither the mind or the body can survive without is other shows that they are working together. Without the mind one would not be able to physically move or breathe, or even have a heart beat. The mind creates feeling within the body such as adrenaline and an elevated heart rate, The body feels pain and the mind also experiences this, causeing tears etc. As James describes in The Priciples of Psychology, the nervous system brings all of this together. Together, working together, as one.

  11. Descartes classic statement of “I think, therefore I am” is a similar statement to “mind over matter”. These statements deem worthy in theory however, in practice seem unsuitable due to the interactions within society and how others view you. It is a complex idea of the interactions between thoughts and feelings. I believe Disney’s take on emotions and reason in the 1943 and 2015 films are vastly different but still possess similarities. The major difference being that the 1943 film only had two characters within the main character’s brain. That being reason and emotion which describes the thought and feelings that go into our actions. It comes across that emotions are less important than reason. It illustrates that in the 40s to feel emotions would be a distraction from what we are needing to achieve in our lives. Barbalet’s idea of the Conventional Approach to emotions relays the ideas that “persons have no control over their emotions which subvert their thoughts and reasons” (Barbalet, 1998: 34). ‘Inside Out’ definitely has a broader and more current approach to emotions and feelings. The idea that we all have the emotions of joy, anger, fear, disgust and sadness is a true indication of the wide range of emotions that humans have. This directly correlates with the ideas portrayed throughout ‘Inside Out’. I believe we have a better understanding of emotions and feelings than we did in 1943 where it was depicted that emotions were bundled up as one. In today’s society, it is more openly accepted to be an ‘emotional’ person with our feelings are direct equations of our actions.

  12. Descartes classic statement of “I think, therefore I am” is a similar statement to “mind over matter”. These statements deem worthy in theory however, in practice seem impractical due to our interactions within society and how others view you. It is a complex idea of the interactions between thoughts and feelings. I believe Disney’s take on emotions and reason in the 1943 and 2015 films are vastly different but still possess similarities. The major difference being that the 1943 film only had two characters within the main character’s brain. That being reason and emotion which describes the thought and feelings that go into our actions. It comes across that emotions are less important than reason. It illustrates that in the 40s to feel emotions would be a distraction from what we are needing to achieve in our lives. Barbalet’s idea of the Conventional Approach to emotions relays the ideas that “persons have no control over their emotions which subvert their thoughts and reasons” (Barbalet, 1998: 34). ‘Inside Out’ definitely has a broader and more current approach to emotions and feelings. The idea that we all have the emotions of joy, anger, fear, disgust and sadness is a true indication of the wide range of emotions that humans have. This directly correlates with the ideas portrayed throughout ‘Inside Out’. I believe we have a better understanding of emotions and feelings than we did in 1943 where it was depicted that emotions were bundled up as one. In today’s society, it is more openly accepted to be an ‘emotional’ person when our feelings are direct equations of our actions.

  13. Taking in the belief of the Hippocrates who believed in dualism while accepting that thoughts can have affects on the body, to me, is a plausible way of thinking.
    Let’s now bring in reason, i think it is acceptable to say that emotion disrupts reason as 99% of humans let their emotions get the best of them in most situations.

    When i watched Disney’s 1943 explanation on emotion, there were a couple of examples that were easy ways to wrap my head around some things. For example when they said Hitler was so successful in his operations was because he knew how to play on people’s emotions … these emotions (fear, pride etc) took over rationality in these peoples minds.

    I would have to say that this is the examples that made the most sense to me. However i don’t fully agree that when emotion takes a front seat to rationality everything can go down hill. Sometimes following your heart is better than following your head.

  14. Taking in the belief of the Hippocrates who believed in dualism while accepting that thoughts can have affects on the body, to me, is a plausible way of thinking.
    Let’s now bring in reason, i think it is acceptable to say that emotion disrupts reason as 99% of humans let their emotions get the best of them in most situations.

    When i watched Disney’s 1943 explanation on emotion, there were a couple of examples that were easy ways to wrap my head around some things. For example when they said Hitler was so successful in his operations was because he knew how to play on people’s emotions … these emotions (fear, pride etc) took over rationality in these peoples minds.

    I would have to say that this is the examples that made the most sense to me. However i don’t fully agree that when emotion takes a front seat to rationality everything can go down hill. Sometimes following your heart is better than following your head.

    #S327UOW17 #Tut2 #Wed1730

  15. Thoughts may be influenced by external factors such as a person’s environment, emotion, and physical state. The question at hand is whether or not thoughts or actions are fueled by rationality or emotion. There are two models, Walt Disney’s 1943 take, and a more current example, from the 2015 film Inside Out. The first step in concluding the most accurate model is to define each by an emotional approach they represent. Disney’s depiction resembles the core ideals of the conventional approach. Emotion and Reason are two factors portrayed in making everyday decisions, and in the short film, counteract and get in the way of each other. The conventional approach also views emotion and reason similarly: that they are opposing. Emotions are compulsive and undermine reason, such as the example of Greenfield’s anger outburst in Barbalet’s novel (p. 32). One can see that portrayed in the short film when Emotion may sometimes forcefully take charge instead of Reason, and the outcome is mostly negative. In conclusion, Barbalet states that “If I think because I am, I am undone when I feel,” (p. 34). On contrast, the Inside Out film leans toward the critical approach. Although logic is a character they excluded from the film, the different emotions work together to make rational decisions. According to Barbalet, emotion supports rationality and problems of rationality are solved by emotion. This can be seen when the emotion characters work together, including emotion in making important decisions. I believe the film Inside Out is a more accurate representation of how reason and emotion interact when it comes to thinking and making decisions. Emotion does not hinder rationality, but builds upon it to help formulate decisions specific to an individual.

  16. Personally I believe that there are certain situations and circumstances which should be rules by feelings or rational. Though the majority of life should be influenced by both. For example a doctor should purely be working with their rational thoughts when dealing with a medical emergency, regardless they believe the patient should be receiving medical care. Alternatively a jury later convicting the same person may have their emotions influence their decision, not just their emotion.

    Disney in 1943 was a vastly different company than what it is today in 2017. Rational was conveyed as a strong, well dressed man while emotion was a cave man. Not nearly accurate. Both have a vital role in how humans operate and co-exist together. One without the other is useless.

  17. My main focus is on the question ‘Do we have a better understanding of the relationship between reason and emotion as a society today?’ and i believe we do. This is evident in Disney’s take on the role of emotions in human action in 1943 compared with 2015. I think as a society we are now a lot more accepting of the importance of emotions and the impact they have on us in everyday life. This is because there is a lot more understanding as to the relationship between logic/reasoning and emotions in our decision making process supporting supports Hume’s definition of reason “…Reason itself is constituted of particular emotions” (Barbalet p. 31) and thus streamlines with the approach that you cannot separate feelings from reason as they are constantly intertwined with one another. I think this understanding is integral in knowing how emotions and reason work today in relation to current society.

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