SOC344 2018 Tut2 – Shoalhaven

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?

#S344UOW18  #Tut2  #Shoal

Posted in SOC327 - Emotions Bodies and Society, UOW.

10 Comments on SOC344 2018 Tut2 – Shoalhaven

Orion Leppan Taylor said : Guest Report 9 months ago

I think the Humean perspective is the most eloquent when explaining the relationship between emotions and rationality. Hume's basic perspective is that emotions or "passions" as he refers to them, are what drive our motivation. They make us care about things, set our values and thus establish our goals for our lives. Reason and logic are tools that we can use to achieve our values, but we cannot derive what our goals should be from reason alone. It's not any more logical to work hard at uni to achieve your dream of becoming a scientist in a difficult field, than it is to choose a relaxed lifestyle working at a small business and spending the rest of your free time surfing. Both of those decisions are driven by your passions, or emotions. A further example is a study that was carried out by Antonio Damasio and others, where it was found that persons with damage to the pre-frontal cortex, an area of the brain closely related to emotions, had significant difficult making basic decisions, such as which shirt to wear. This demonstrates that without adequate emotional or "passionate" drive, we have nothing to motivate the decisions in our lives.

Andrew Stevens said : Guest Report 9 months ago

#S344UOW18 #Shoal #Tut2 The concept of how emotions are constructed, managed and experienced in society starts with the two basic fundamentals of Reasoning and Emotion. Sociology has now come to an understanding that Reasoning and Emotion interrelate with each other. According to the Barbalet (1998) reading, Webber believed feelings were “compulsive and disruptive” and that they are “vague” because they are “mental experiences “introjected’ into us”. Webber basically points out that emotions are controlled and created by the body and not the mind. When observing the Walt Disney “Reasoning and Emotions’ cartoon set in this week’s reading it proves Webber wrong. What this cartoon displays to the audience is that Reasoning “controls” emotion and they work side by side together in the human brain. Politicians such as Donald Trump use this “Reasoning” to get their message across e.g Make America Great Again, More Jobs. President Donald Trump has used emotion e.g I am not a Politician, Washington has let us down. This is how he has gained popularity. This is an example of how people in society are constructing and managing others in society mentally to create a positive experience in their minds of their character.

Andrew S said : Guest Report 9 months ago

The concept of how emotions are constructed, managed and experienced in society starts with the two basic fundamentals of Reasoning and Emotion. Sociology has now come to an understanding that Reasoning and Emotion interrelate with each other. According to the Barbalet (1998) reading, Webber believed feelings were “compulsive and disruptive” and that they are “vague” because they are “mental experiences “introjected’ into us”. Webber basically points out that emotions are controlled and created by the body and not the mind. When observing the Walt Disney “Reasoning and Emotions’ cartoon set in this week’s reading it proves Webber wrong. What this cartoon displays to the audience is that Reasoning “controls” emotion and they work side by side together in the human brain. Politicians such as Donald Trump use this “Reasoning” to get their message across e.g Make America Great Again, More Jobs. President Donald Trump has used emotion e.g I am not a Politician, Washington has let us down. This is how he has gained popularity. This is an example of how people in society are constructing and managing others in society mentally to create a positive experience in their minds of their character. #S344UOW18 #Shoal #Tut2

Bree Zammit said : Guest Report 9 months ago

Are reason and emotion separate from one another and are they able to be carried out independently in thought and action? In Weber’s understanding of reason, it is explained that analysed, thought based action creates the ability to judge which action is best in the particular situation (“Emotion and rationality”, 1998, p.35). In this explanation emotion is later explained as an unwelcomed interruption in the analysis of thought. I had never thought about the possibilities of a purely logical thought without any emotional influence. I had also never thought about the infinite emotional possibilities. After becoming aware of the basic western recognised human emotions I thought about the possibility of infinite combinations of emotions, including feelings that may not be able to be explained. Dimasio explores separation of different types of emotional influence in the brain and concludes that there is a separation between emotion that modulates memory and emotion that modulates decision making. (“Emotion, Decision Making and the Orbitofrontal Cortex”2000, p.12). Are emotion and reason just two ways emotion modulates thought? Perhaps some emotionally influenced thoughts and actions are labelled logical due to an embedded idea that calm, analysed thoughts do not involve emotion. “Emotions are deeply embedded in physical structures and subject to socialisation and learning processes” (“Emotion and rationality”, 1998, p.43), perhaps emotions are so deeply embedded we, as a society cannot recognise what thoughts and actions are in fact emotional and consider emotion as irrational. In high school I was interested in and good at English and art, because of this I noticed that there seemed to be a binary of being good at math and being good at English and the former was deemed more successful than the latter. A conversation I recently had about high school left me thinking after the comment; “I was good at English too; I wasn’t smart enough for maths”. I feel that the lack of emotional input that maths involves creates a value in maths as logical and perhaps rational, whereas English involves an emotional aspect that is required in understanding language and history, which leaves it taken less seriously. References 1. J.M. Barbalet 1998, ‘Emotion and Rationality’, Emotion, Social Theory and Social Structure: A Macro Sociological Approach, Cambridge University Press, United Kingdom, pp. 29-61 2. A. Bechara, H. Damasio & A.R. Damasio 2000, ‘Emotion, Decision Making and the Orbitofrontal Cortex’, Cerebral Cortex, vol. 10, no. 3, pp. 295-307 #S344UOW18 #Shoal #Tut2

Zachary Ghilezan said : Guest Report 9 months ago

In the 1943 film by Disney, titled reason and emotion, reason is portrayed as being the driving influence on how we live our lives. In the film reason is primarily in control of us, until there are extreme circumstances and our emotions take over. For example in the film you could see the debate reason and emotion were having in her mind when she wanted ice cream. Her reason tried telling her it wasn't good for her and she shouldn't have it, however in the end emotion took over and she got ice cream. in the 2015 film 'inside out' by Disney, when something happens it is emotions job to make us feel the correct way. For example in the film when another student says something about her at school the 'anger' emotion takes over, to make her feel this way. To me the 1943 film makes more sense because it shows a clear battle in the mind between logic and emotion, something which i feel on a day to day basis. This is something the movie 'inside out' does not. This is because 'logic' was purposely left out of the film, most likely to make it more appealing and easier to understand for children. #S344UOW18 #Shoal #Tut2

Leanne Watson said : Guest Report 9 months ago

One could have the impression that Descartes was a very emotional man. Especially as he was ‘concerned’ that the deceiver may have been trying to influence him into believing he didn’t exist. Wasn’t Descartes pondering on the matter because he in fact, cared? Can morals exist without emotion? In Descartes case, culture or “background emotions” (Barbalet, 1998) seemed to play a factor, due to his religious beliefs. Also, Do Amoebae think? They seem to exist, regardless. I imagine they live, and thrive due to their logical imprint: if this – then that. they appear to thrive using logic, as a computer operates, but with a far more complex ability to adapt to their environment. So, there is existence without emotion, it seems. Disney’s 1943 depiction of the workings of the mind in ‘Reason and Emotion’ seems extremely simplistic and Disney’s “Inside out” (2015) while it makes more sense, could not include logic as an emotion, as each emotional character used logic to determine its actions. Therefore, the Conventional approach that stems on the fact that emotion is the opposite of reason seems to be illogical. #S344UOW18 #Tut2 #Shoal

Amy Angeloska said : Guest Report 9 months ago

Some would say the mind and the body are separate from each other however thoughts and body can affect one another, so there is a bit of a contrast from my understanding. The conventional dualism of mind over emotion/ body began to be undermined by positivist science in the modern era (Patulny, 2018). There are different beliefs around this topic for example Christens followed Plato and the romans in adhering to the mind-body split. The human body was made in the image of god, Christen sacraments about consuming the blood and body of Christ (Patulny, 2018). As Barbalet states, “emotions distract persons from their purpose, then, at the same time, emotions establish afresh what their purposes are to be. Viewed from perspective, emotions need not oppose reason so much as give it direction…” (Barbalet, J. M, 1998 ,p.31). With that being said it is evident that emotions complement rationality, in that they set goals for action, we cannot make rational decisions without attaching some sort of emotional valence to an outcome. I feel as though emotions have a lot of power to over ride the body without emotion you would not operate hand in hand with rational processes/ outcomes. Emotions, which disturb rational process and outcomes are love, hate, fear and anger these emotions are often seen as irrational but are apart of day-to-day life. The 1943 short film made the most sense to me as I personally agree that human’s thoughts are the primary influence on our actions and that one should not act merely from their emotions whereas the 2015 Disney film ‘Inside Out’ symbolises emotions as being the core influence to a humans actions. The segment that stood out most within the Disney film was the wartime interpretation as it views emotions independently from ways of thinking such as logic and common sense. #S344UOW18 #Tut2 #shoal

Josh Coulter said : Guest Report 9 months ago

Throughout History our sociological, anthropological, philosophical, psychological, psychiatric traditions transform and shape our mind and body in society. Our perception in society can be entirely coloured by our environment around us and our connection that we embed toward it. The tradition approach of the body and mind being separate entities is proposed by (Barbalet 1998), he concludes that “Persons have no control over the emotions which subvery their thoughts and reason. The 1943 animation Reason and Emotion basically ignores that emotions can generate a positive reactions to situations. The filmmakers paint a vivid picture towards reactions to emotions declaring “the damage we can do by allowing our emotions overtake our common sense”. However the message from the 2015 film Inside Out depicts that emotions help organise our rational thinking in society. The film establishes that there are 5 core emotions to our biology, rather than the 1943 animation that highlights the damage it creates. Overall I Believe that Inside Out is more accurate as it shows how our emotions can be both negative and positive in societal situations”. While your feelings are separate from your body, I believe that mind and body interrelates intricately and without support one function would not be able to function without the other. #S344UOW18 #Shoal #Tut2

Demi McLatchie said : Guest Report 9 months ago

It is interesting that only upon studying the complex topic of the mind/body split, does one consider commonly said phrases such as “Mind over matter” and “I think, therefore I am” (Descartes), to be debatable. Barbalet (1998 p. 29) reflects on the conventional approach, which suggests that emotion and reason are two individual concepts of which are completely opposite. Disney’s take on the role of emotions in human action in 1943, highlights this conventional approach relationship between reason and emotion. The constant conflict between the two, along with a consistent representation that emotion is the inferior of the two, highlights the overriding characteristic of the conventional approach, that reason or rationality is superior to emotion. Inside Out (2015) removed the concept of logic all together, potentially ensuring an easy to follow film for children; however, the five emotions tended to discuss decision making as a team, creating a sense of reason within the emotion. This therefore creates a link reflecting the critical approach, which as discussed by Barbalet (1998) highlights how rationality and emotion complement each other. It seems Inside Out created a clearer depiction of the two films, when considering today’s society. #S344UOW18 #Shoal #Tut2

Tiana Brown said : Guest Report 9 months ago

The role of emotion in human action is prevalent from the day that we are born. Social conformity dictates that we need reason or logic to balance emotions that can be detrimental to our health and well being if it goes unchecked. Disney’s role in this concept in 1943, demonstrates the conflict between our logical mind and our emotions. The use of emotion in propaganda demonstrates how Hitler manipulated the masses through fear and patriotism, while Disney used the same tactic to fight against him. They were appealing to an adult audience by communicating moral versatility. In contrast in 2015, Disney has intentionally emitted logic from Inside Out to appeal to children by using emotion as a commercial tool, to advertise and sell their product. The 1943 depictions makes more sense in that it combines both logic and emotion to articulate the mind/body split. #S344UOW18 #Tut2 #Shoal

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