Emotion is a combination of action patterns; a function of human evolutionary history; elicitors that produce emotions, both learned and innate; and individual self-experience. Our everyday experience confirms the existence of emotions, and people can generally identify different kinds of emotion, but the contemporary literature reveals that attempts to define emotion frequently devolve into elaborate taxonomies in which the classification of different emotions becomes the primary task. So, for example, we can talk about negative and positive emotions or about moral emotions. The questions then turn from what an emotion is to how many emotions there are, which emotions are fundamental, and what relations exist among the specific emotions and between emotions, cognitions, and social behavior. The lack of agreement about what constitutes an emotion ...

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