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emotion

This tag is associated with 33 posts

After dark

It was an ordinary Friday night out in Edinburgh’s Grassmarket, except that the two guys at the front of the group in the picture below are wearing brain-monitoring EEG headsets. The occasion was a workshop organised by Dorothea Kalogianni to coincide with a talk by visiting fellow Carlo Ratti, who runs the MIT Senseable City … Continue reading

Emotional labourers

If you run a tutorial, advise students, front a counter to answer queries, or deliver marks and feedback then you are an emotional labourer. Lecturers attempt to deliver and manage enthusiasm, curiosity, passion, and hope amongst students and colleagues. They may also encourage respect, fear, and even anger about their subjects. In the academic service economy emotional labour may also require academic and support personnel to appease distress, … Continue reading

Writer’s block

The monk dipped his quill and positioned it over the parchment again. His fingers were black and smudges formed on the unyielding page. Drops of ink found their way to the frayed cuff of his robe. “How can I be expected to do this!” he said. “What task has the Abbot set you now?” I asked. “I’ve been told to pen … Continue reading

Social media help you to believe what you want to believe

The Scottish referendum on independence has helped expose something we knew all along about what it is to have an opinion. Some of us are good at filtering out the evidence we would rather not see, and accepting only what supports our beliefs. In an article in The Times yesterday, journalist Hugo Rifkind identified the current mood of the so-called … Continue reading

Where does happiness happen?

Where is the love? asked Roberta Flack and Donny Hathaway back in 1972 (and The Black-Eyed Peas in 2009). It’s really a complaint — you offered me love but it never came. Where can you find love, happiness, anger, grief? It’s only a slightly different question: Where do emotions happen anyway? Here are some candidates. 1. It’s in our heads. The … Continue reading

Emotional words

Early last year Facebook introduced the option of tagging your status updates with an indication of how you feel. You select from a menu to indicate if you are happy, bored, irritated — that kind of thing — and there’s a smiley that goes with each feeling. It was introduced as a trial, but is … Continue reading

Mood and movement (and trams)

The trams are running in Edinburgh, after 6 years of construction, stalls and turmoil. It’s a nice ride, described well in a recent post by blogger Gillean Somerville-Arjat: “It doesn’t shoogle or wobble and hurtle you about with sudden braking as the buses do.” I think of gliding down Princes Street on a tram as something like being in a … Continue reading

How bored is your dog?

People have tried EEG on pumpkins, melons and dead fish. There’s no real evidence that it works on dogs, but it was worth a try. The dominant reading for Jasmine was excitement. This blog post is co-written with PhD student Dorothea Kalogianni. Electroencephalography (EEG) is a fascinating technology that measures the intensities of the key frequencies at which the human … Continue reading

Moody atmospheres and electric auras

How do buildings affect people emotionally? Most architects prefer to talk of atmosphere rather than emotion. For architectural theorist Mark Wigley, atmosphere: “surrounds a building, clinging to the material object.” He says it even emanates from the building: “It is some kind of sensuous emission of sound, light, heat, smell, and moisture; a swirling climate of intangible effects … Continue reading

Wet and wild

In a recent experiment into green landscapes and their salutogenic (health giving) potential (led by colleague Jenny Roe), we presented people with a range of images of urban and green space — dry images deliberately selected without “blue space” (i.e. water). Such is homo sapiens‘ powerful affinity with life-giving water, we thought its presence would … Continue reading

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