Chapter 13: Positive Emotions

Subjective Feelings

Figure 20 displays the two-dimensional models we discuss each chapter. Russell (1980) views positive emotions as highly pleasant, ranging from low to moderate to high arousal. Per this model, calm is low in arousal and moderately pleasant, while alert is high in arousal and moderately pleasant. Watson and Tellegen (1985) view true positive emotions to be those that are pleasant AND highly arousing, labeled High Positive Affect. Thus, low arousal positive emotions located on Low Negative Affect are not considered true emotions, which differs from Russell (1980).

 

An image of a circle with a horizontal line that indicates a range of unpleasant (left) to pleasant (right). The circle also has a verticle line the indicates a range from deactivation (bottom) to Activation (top)
Inside the top left quadrant of the circle (unpleasant, activation) the following emotions are listed: tense, nervous, stressed, upset. Featured on the outer part of this quadrant are the following emotions: Fear, Anger, Disgust. Inside the top right quadrant of the circle (pleasant, activation) are the emotions: alert, excited, elated, happy. The emotion Happiness is feature on the outer part of the quadrant.
Inside the bottom left quadrant of the circle (unpleasant, deactivation) are the emotions: Sad, depressed, lethargic, fatigued. Sadness is an emotion that is shown on the outer part of this quadrant. Inside the bottom right quadrant of the circle (pleasant, deactivation) are the emotions: calm, relaxed, seren, contented.
A circle diagram of the Watson andd Tellegen (1985) model.
At the very top of the circle is the Label – High Positive Affect, listing emotions: active, elated, enthusiastic, excited, peppy, and strong. Clockwise from that label is the Label – Strong Engagement, and lists emotions: aroused, astonished, surprised. Clockwise from that label is the Label – High Negative Affect (3 o clock position) and lists the emotions: Distressed, fearful, hostile, jittery, nervous, scornful. Clockwise from that label is the Label – Unpleasantness, and lists emotions: blue, grouchy, lonely, sad, sorry, unhappy. Clockwise from that label is the Label – Low Positive Affect (6 o’clock position) and lists the emotions: drowsy, dull, sleepy, sluggish. Clockwise from that label is the Label – Disengagement, and lists the emotions: quiescent, quiet, and still. Clockwise from that label is the Label – Low Negative Affect (9 o’clock position), andd lists the emotions: at rest, calm, placid, relaxed. Clockwise from that label is the Label – Pleasantness, and lists the emotions: content, happy, kindly, pleased, satisfied, warmhearted. There is a verticle, horizontal, and two diagnal lines that all intersect at the center of the circle.

Note.  Russell (1980) model is on left; Watson and Tellegen (1985) model is on right.  Left figure reproduced from “Independence and bipolarity in the structure of current affect,” by L. Feldman Barrett and J.A. Russell, 1998, Journal of Personality and Social Psychology74(4), p. 970 (https://doi.org/10.1037/0022-3514.74.4.967). Copyright 1998 by the American Psychological Association.  Right figure reproduced “Toward a consensual structure of mood.,” by D.T. Watson and A. Tellegen, 1985, Psychological Bulletin, 98(2), p. 221 (https://doi.org/10.1037/0033-2909.98.2.219). Copyright 1985 by the American Psychological Association.

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