Before answering please consider the following simple experiment. In any moment you do feel sad, take a pencil and bite ir for a couple of minutes. You eventually find yourself then smiling and finishing your sad state. Now answer the previous question.
Emotion is the affective tone with which organisms respond to their circumstances. Three research lines are to be highlighted in the study of emotion, with respective antecedents in Charles Darwin, William James and Sigmund Freud.
Emotions arise from filogenetically selected behaviours. It may happen that obsolete conducts remain, even if they are no longer fit to present demands. For example, many people are still afraid of snakes, while it is so unprobable to find any wild snake in daily life. It would be more adequate for us to be afraid of plugs, hobs or lifts, since they really endanger our lifes.
Even if it is common to undistinctively talk about emotion and feeling, there are differences between them, particularly as to their duration. Emotion takes about miliseconds, while feelings are more durable and a later result in the phylogeny of our brain. Emotions are located in the limbical system while feelings in the orbito ventral area.
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Carmen Requena (dec/2009)
[It correspond with the article directly edited by the editor/author in the left column]