Copy of the Introduction to "Wisdom in Feeling" by Feldman and Salovey
Recently I came upon a copy of this chapter. I have heard of the book for quite a while, but have never seen it. I started reading with much interest and relatively high expectations. I liked the title of the book, "Wisdom in Feeling" It sounded like it might be a book that a normal person could read and also a book that would show that emotions have a practical survival value. As I read this introductory chapter, though, I felt disappointed and frustrated. Frustrated by the once again needlessly complicated language, or what I have called "Phidish" - the language of PhD's. From reading this chapter I saw that the authors wrote this book for other psychologists, not for normal people. (Yes, you could say that I am calling psychologists abnormal!) The authors even admit that they wrote this book for other psychologists as shown by the final sentence in the chapter:
Emotional intelligence may be an important conceptual framework for guiding research on emotional phenomena and their influence on the range of things that concern us as psychologists.
I was also disappointed that Peter Salovey did not write more of the book himself. I know he is a busy buy but if I really don't think much of these "edited" books which are just a collection of other people's journal articles Salovey only was a co-author on the introductory chapter, and even then he was not the primary writer, since Feldman is listed first. I had wanted to see more of Peter's own ideas about EI. After seeing how little he contributed to the book I question why he even has his name on it, except for the obvious reasons of fame and royalties.
July 10, 2005
Here is a page I created a while back which shows the table of contents and also has some of my famous editorial comments
Wisdom in Feeling: Psychological Processes in
Edited by Lisa Feldman Barrett and Peter Salovey, Copyright © 2002
The concept of emotional intelligence has emerged
as an area of intense interest, both in scientific (Mayer,
Salovey, & Caruso, 2000; Salovey & Mayer, 1990) and lay
(e.g., Goleman, 1995, 1998) circles. Because emotionally
intelligent individuals are socially effective, definitions of
the concept in trade books and the popular press have included
personality attributes more generally associated with adaptive
personal and social functioning that may or may not be related to
skills and abilities in the emotional arena (Mayer et al., 2000).
Scientific treatments have defined emotional intelligence in
terms of mental abilities rather than broad social competencies.
For instance, Mayer and Salovey (1997) defined emotional
intelligence as the ability to perceive, appraise, and express
emotions accurately; the ability to access and generate feelings
to facilitate cognitive activities; the ability to understand
emotion-relevant concepts and use emotion-relevant language; and
the ability to manage ones own emotions and the emotions of
others to promote growth, well-being, and functional social
The concept of emotional intelligence has been useful as an organizing framework in diverse contexts. It has been helpful to educators designing curricula for the purposes of improving childrens social and emotional functioning (Mayer & Cobb, 2000; Salovey & Sluyter, 1997). It has been used by the human resources and organizational development fields to characterize skills important in the workplace other than specific job-related competencies (Caruso, Mayer, & Salovey, 2002; Cherniss & Goleman, 2001). Yet we wonder whether the excitement about the heuristic value of emotional intelligence has overshadowed a careful study of what it is, and in particular, the underlying psychological components that when brought together emerge as emotional intelligence. We expect that with a detailed explication of the multiple processes that characterize emotional intelligence, it will emerge as an organizing framework for investigators who study phenomena in which emotions play some role. The purpose of this volume is to examine these component processes using the model outlined by Mayer and Salovey (1997) as a starting point:
(1) perceiving and appraising emotion,
(2) using emotion to facilitate thought,
(3) understanding and communicating emotion concepts, and
(4) managing emotions in oneself and others.
By establishing the underlying processes that
characterize each of these domains of emotional intelligence, the
construct validity of emotional intelligence as a whole can
emerge. As research on emotion progresses at many levels of
analysis, from neuroscience to culture, the concept of emotional
intelligence continues to evolve. The chapters in this book
reflect some of these developments. One issue is whether it makes
sense to talk of accuracy when referring to the
representation of emotional events. Emotions are contextualized,
emergent phenomena, such that there are no right or wrong
responsesno accuracy in an absolute sense. However, some
responses are better than others. Usually, judgments about the
desirability of a response are culturally and temporally
situated. Thus, it is sensible to measure emotional intelligence
in terms of an individuals understanding and use of this
A second issue concerns the harnessing of emotions to encourage rational thought, stimulate creative problem solving, and motivate behavior. It is not a new idea that emotions play a pivotal role in assisting good decision making (e.g., Damasio, 1994; DeSousa, 1987), but the multiple ways in which this can occur are still being delineated. To begin with, emotional intelligence is more than just relying on feeling in reasoning. It is also harnessing the motivating properties of affect in
everyday life. Traditional discussions of passion and reason assume a strong boundary between the two. Although thinking and feeling are certainly experientially distinct, recent neuroscience investigations suggest that they may be less neuroanatomically separable than originally assumed (Lane & Nadel, 2000). As a consequence, the relationship between emotion and cognition may need to be reconsidered. Moreover, less attention has been paid to the role of emotion in instigating behavior when the behaviors in question are not related to immediate survival. Unless one lives in a war-torn part of the world or in a distressed urban center, the probability of confronting stimuli that threaten survival and provoke prototypical emotional events (of the kind described by Darwin, 1872/1998) is relatively low. A useful theory must account for those events, but should also be able to capture the more frequent, but perhaps less dramatic, emotional responses that characterize modern daily living.
As for the structure of emotion knowledge, we do not know whether emotion concepts have the functional properties of concepts in other domains such as animals, automobiles, and food, or whether they have unique properties. If emotion concepts are like other concepts, then are they best described as traditional feature-based categories (Clore & Ortony, 1991), fuzzy sets with prototypes (Russell, 1991), or theory-based groupings (Medin, 1989)? Are they permanent or fluid, changing in response to situational contingencies in the immediate external environment (Barsalou, 1983) or phenomenological experiences in ones internal environment (e.g., Niedenthal, Halberstadt, & Innes-Ker, 1999)? Of course, the most important questions concern the relations between how emotional information is represented and the manner in which such representations influence diverse elements in an emotional response.
Finally, theories about coping, mechanisms of defense, finding meaning in adversity, resilience, and flexible responding all converge on the notion that components in an emotional response often require active management. This idea is reflected in the fourth branch of emotional intelligence concerning the regulationoften strategicof feelings and emotions in oneself and other people. Typically, theorizing on these issues focuses on the prevention, abbreviation, or transformation of negative emotion, but is this really the dominant motivation for emotion management? It is plausible, even likely, that negative emotional responses allow us to function effectively in certain situations. Even more likely is the notion that cultivating positive emotions can have adaptive value in its own right, over and above the amelioration of negative responses.
The chapters included in this volume link ongoing basic research on affect and emotion to the ideas embodied in the emotional intelligence concept. In doing so, they provide evidence for the value of emotional intelligence as a framework for organizing and advancing theory and research on emotion. These chapters also stretch the boundaries of the emotional intelligence idea in new and important ways.
Part I of this volume deals with the processes involved in perceiving and identifying emotions in oneself and others. Bachorowski and Owren describe the functional acoustics in an emotional signaling system. They argue that there are direct and indirect ways in which perceivers attribute emotion to targets on the basis of their nonlinguistic vocal properties. Especially interesting are the ways in which declarative knowledge about the vocalizer interact with prosodic features of the
vocal cues to produce an emotional impression in the listener. Perhaps even more apparent are the emotional cues provided on the canvas of the face. Elfenbein, Marsh, and Ambady describe the crucial role of reading facial expressions in emotional intelligence. Their chapter addresses how the meanings of facial expressions are interpreted against a contextual backdrop. Although facial expressions may provide some signal in an emotional transaction, they are not impervious to the influence of the relationship between sender and receiver, culture, social class, gender, and other features of the social environment. In the final chapter of Part I, Nelson and Bouton argue that the types of judgments described in the first two chapters may have their basis in associative learning. They detail the associative processes that modify or change the affective value of a stimulus. On the basis of the evidence they present, Nelson and Bouton argue that our learning histories are always with us. Although the affective significance of a stimulus may change, that change is often contextual (and therefore conditional in nature). As a result, learning histories are accumulative and to some extent indelible. These properties of acquisition and change in the affective significance of stimuli have profound implications for other aspects of an emotional response. Together, these three chapters begin to characterize how we come to view certain kinds of cues as emotionally meaningful, and certain types of information as emotionally relevant.
Part II describes how affective experiences come to influence thought and action. Gohm and Clore provide an explicit framework for understanding how individuals rely on affective feelings as a source of information in social judgment. They suggest that there is significant variability in this process, however. Those individuals who report attending to their feelings, and experiencing those feelings in a clear, intense way, use them in the judgment process differently than do others. Gilbert, Driver-Linn, and Wilson also describe the informational value of affective experience, specifically the value of anticipated affective states. They describe the processes involved in impact bias, the tendency to misjudge both the duration and the intensity of predicted affective reactions. They suggest that similar biases may play out in retrospective accounts of emotional reactions as well, leading to the idea that prospective and retrospective judgments have more in common with each other than they do with actually experienced affective states.
Schwarzs analysis suggests that the states of mind accompanying everyday moods are best suited for different kinds of cognitive tasks. The expansive orientation facilitated by pleasant affective feelings encourages top-down information processing that is creative and heuristic driven. In contrast, the detail-oriented focus facilitated by unpleasant affective feelings encourages bottom-up information processing that is stimulus driven, deductive, and engenders the careful scrutiny of incoming information. Schwarzs ideas about how moods tune the cognitive system have implications for a range of outcomes, including stereotyping, attitude change, and analytical reasoning. Niedenthal, Dalle, and Rohmann also discuss how feeling tunes cognitive processing. The emotional aspects of stimuli form a core organizing principle around which they can be grouped into concepts. Discrete emotional experiences function as the glue in perceiving these concepts. The implication is clear: People literally perceive the world differently depending on how they are feeling. Discrete emotions influence not only categorization processes, but other cognitive processes as well. DeSteno and Braverman discuss the various ways in which discrete emotional experiences affect attitude change. They argue that individual differences in emotional intelligence influence the mechanisms by which emotions have their impact. In doing so, they synthesize the affect-as-information perspective with the cognitive-tuning approach to provide an emotional spin on the popular elaboration-likelihood model of attitude change.
The final chapter in Part II provides a neuroanatomical basis for the idea that feelings influence strategic information processing and planned behavior. Using examples from psychopathology, especially obsessivecompulsive disorder, Savage details how one area of the prefrontal cortex, called the orbital frontal cortex, allows individuals to harness affective information during the early stages of responding to stimuli, especially those that are novel or ambiguous in some way. In a preliminary sense, Savage lays the anatomical foundation for how emotional information influences thought and behavior.
Part III deals with emotion conceptsindividuals knowledge base about emotion and their ability to represent symbolically elements of the emotional response. This issue has been a focus of systematic research in developmental psychology. Denham and Kochanoff describe much of this research in their review of the developmental milestones in childrens understanding of emotionhow this understanding develops from the ability to label emotional expressions, identify emotion-eliciting situations, comprehend probable causes of emotion, appreciate the consequences of emotion, and infer the emotional experiences of others. These authors provide a useful summary of the development of an emotional knowledge base that may be involved in other aspects of emotional intelligence. Lane and Pollermann describe the different levels of sophistication that characterize individuals understanding of emotional experience. Using a Piagetian framework, they suggest that there are different levels of development, from understanding emotional experience in simplistic ways (e.g., in global or physical terms) to a more
complex conceptual system that is precise and multifaceted. The complexity of a persons conceptual framework will determine, in turn, both the degree to which emotional experience can be represented mentally in a complex fashion and the complexity of the experience itself.
When laypersons think about emotional intelligence, they likely focus on regulation. In fact, managing the potential array of elements in an emotional response, and attempting to influence the feelings of others, are central aspects of competence in the emotional domain. Part IV of this volume concerns managing emotion. Gross and John are especially concerned with providing a framework for understanding the range of strategies involved in emotion regulation. Specifically, they contrast those strategies focused on managing the potential antecedents of an emotion response with those that change the response once it has occurred. They are also concerned with the effects of such strategies, in particular the consequences of suppression. Next, Tugade and Fredrickson point out the value of positive emotions. They suggest that positive emotions provide a powerful antidote to negative reactions. In addition, they highlight the intrinsic adaptive value of positive
emotions themselves. Their broaden-and-build model suggests that positive emotions provide us with the psychological resources to engage in the more adaptive antecedent-focused strategies described by Gross and John. The final chapter in Part IV explores the consequences of challenging the deeply held belief that hedonism alone is the primary motive for emotion regulation. Knowing that certain types of cognitive and behavioral tasks are accomplished better when our cognitive system is tuned by negative emotion, Parrott argues that there may be circumstances in which it is useful to cultivate negative emotions and unleash
their functional power. Contrary to being hijacked by negative emotion (e.g., Goleman, 1995), Parrotts analysis suggests that we may benefit from our negative feelings, which can sometimes be the guide to thinking clearly and behaving appropriately.
A good theory is generative. And although it is too early to know whether emotional intelligence is a foundation for creative research in emotion, Part V of this volume provides three illustrations of interesting directions for future research. Russell and Blanchard suggest that a person cannot be intelligent unless he or she knows what to be intelligent about. They argue that emotion is a category too broad for scientific discourse and suggest a lexicon for parsing the emotion domain that is consistent with many theories of emotion. Just as a well-developed emotion lexicon is important for functionally effective emotional behavior, these authors suggest that the definitional clarity resulting from a precise scientific lexicon can be important for effective future research on emotional intelligence.
The final two chapters provide examples of how emotional intelligence can make contact with research that is traditionally considered outside the realm of affect science. Ferguson and Bargh describe their work on automatic attitudes. They discuss the mechanisms through which individuals effortlessly integrate evaluative information from individual features of a novel object to provide an evaluative summary response to it. Aspects of this process appear to occur outside of consciousness and likely contribute to the initial affective appraisal of a stimulus. Blair reviews some of the literature on Theory of Mind, the ability to represent the mental states of self and others, and examines potential links to the various facets of emotional intelligence. Using examples from autism, where Theory of Mind is impaired, and examples from sociopathy, where emotional intelligence is impaired, Blair examines whether Theory of Mind is necessary for emotionally intelligent behavior.
Much of the popular media attention to the idea of emotional intelligence has focused on the measurement of an EQ (e.g., Gibbs, 1995). Although assessing individual differences in the abilities that constitute emotional intelligence is a useful endeavor, it is our view that the field will benefit from a deeper understanding of the processes that subserve these different skills. Such an analysis allows research on emotional intelligence to be better situated in the field of affect science, rather than merely a provocative contribution to the intelligence testing literature. Once situated there, emotional intelligence has the potential to organize what we know and stimulate new questions about how emotional phenomena serve adaptive personal and social functioning at many levels of analysis. Regardless of ones core theoretical preferences, there is a convergence of thought that emotions are functional. One cannot study the processes by which people emote or assign emotional value without considering their effectiveness. And, as learning theorist O. H. Mowrer (1960, p. 308) noted, the emotions do not at all deserve being put into
opposition with intelligence. The spirit of Mowrers comment is clear: We cannot understand the workings of the mind and their influence on behavior without understanding the role of emotional processes. Emotional intelligence may be an important conceptual framework for guiding research on emotional phenomena and their influence on the range of things that concern us as psychologists.
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The Wisdom in Feeling
Below is the table of contents from the book The Wisdom in Feeling, by Lisa Feldman Barrett and Peter Salovey (copied from David Caruso's site)
It looks like a collection of very academic articles, not many of which are really directly related to emotional intelligence. And not many related to wisdom. It also looks to me like Peter Salovey did not do too much except probably read some of the articles, help write the introduction and put his name on the book. Notice that he did not write, or even co-write any of the main chapters. And there is not even a chapter with Jack Mayer as an author or co-author. I'm not sure what is up with that. But it all looks a bit suspicious to me.
Also, from just the table of contents, it reminds me of Reuven BarOn's so called Handbook of Emotional Intelligence. I would like volunteers to read the book, or parts of it and send me notes -- similar to how I did for Reuven's book. Being in Peru, I can't go to the library and get the book like I could if I lived in the USA. It also is very expensive, 55 dollars. But if you want to buy it, please do so through this link to Amazon so I will get a little kickback.
Introduction, Barrett and Salovey
I. Perceiving Emotion
1. Vocal Acoustics in Emotional Intelligence, Bachorowski and Owren
2. Emotional Intelligence and the Recognition of Emotion from Facial Expressions, Elfenbein, Marsh, and Ambady
3. Extinction, Inhibition, and Emotional Intelligence, Nelson and Bouton
II. Using Emotion in Thought and Action
4. Affect as Information: An Individual-Differences Approach, Gohm and Clore
5. The Trouble with Vronsky: Impact Bias in the Forecasting of Future Affective States, Gilbert, Driver-Linn, and Wilson
6. Situated Cognition and the Wisdom in Feelings: Cognitive Tuning, Schwarz
7. Emotional Response Categorization as Emotionally Intelligent Behavior, Niedenthal, Dalle, and Rohmann
8. Emotion and Persuasion: Thoughts on the Role of Emotional Intelligence, DeSteno and Braverman
9. The Role of Emotion in Strategic Behavior: Insights from Psychopathology, Savage
III. Understanding Emotion
10. "Why Is She Crying?": Children's Understanding of Emotion from Preschool to Preadolescence, Denham and Kochanoff
11. Complexity of Emotion Representations, Lane and Pollermann
IV. Managing Emotion
12. Wise Emotion Regulation, Gross and John
13. Positive Emotions and Emotional Intelligence, Tugade and Fredrickson
14. The Functional Utility of Negative Emotions, Parrott
15. Toward a Shared Language for Emotion and Emotional Intelligence, Russell and Barchard
16. Sensitivity and Flexibility: Exploring the Knowledge Function of Automatic Attitudes, Ferguson and Bargh
17. Theory of Mind, Autism, and Emotional Intelligence, Blair
Some marketing propoganda also from David's site
"Barrett and Salovey have chosen an outstanding group of
emotion researchers to contribute to this volume. The work
reported here goes a long way toward allaying the editors' stated
concern that excitement about the heuristic value of the concept
of emotional intelligence might overshadow careful study of the
processes attributed to it. Chapters, many of which grabbed my
attention immediately, include accounts of exciting basic
research and suggest new directions for future work. This book is
not just about emotional intelligence, but about emotion science
itself." -Carroll E. Izard, PhD, Department of Psychology,
University of Delaware
"Here, finally, is a book that puts the notion of emotional intelligence on the map of psychological science. While John Mayer and Peter Salovey, the pioneers in this area, worked assiduously to produce theory and data on the issue over the years, their work often seemed a bit overshadowed by the piles of popular bestsellers vulgarizing their ideas. In this book, Lisa Feldman Barrett and Salovey bring together a large group of expert researchers from different areas in psychology, including many eminent scholars in the psychology of emotion, to take an in-depth look at what psychological science can contribute to understanding the processes involved in perceiving, using, understanding, and managing emotions. This volume will be an invaluable source for anyone interested in this important and timely research area." - Klaus R. Scherer, University of Geneva