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The New Unconscious$
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Ran R. Hassin, James S. Uleman, and John A. Bargh

Print publication date: 2006

Print ISBN-13: 9780195307696

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: March 2012

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195307696.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM OXFORD SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.oxfordscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Oxford University Press, 2019. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in OSO for personal use. date: 17 September 2019

The Interaction of Emotion and Cognition: The Relation Between the Human Amygdala and Cognitive Awareness

The Interaction of Emotion and Cognition: The Relation Between the Human Amygdala and Cognitive Awareness

Chapter:
(p.60) (p.61) 3 The Interaction of Emotion and Cognition: The Relation Between the Human Amygdala and Cognitive Awareness
Source:
The New Unconscious
Author(s):

Elizabeth A. Phelps

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195307696.003.0004

Over the last few decades, psychological theories on the relation between cognition and emotion have been shaped by evidence from neuroscience techniques. In particular, the debate of whether or not emotion occurs in the absence of cognitive awareness has been influenced by studies of a subcortical brain structure, the amygdala, that is more or less specialized for emotional processing. Neuroscience studies with nonhuman animals, while suggestive, do not directly address the relationship between emotion, the amygdala, and cognitive awareness. The amygdala is necessary for the acquisition and physiological expression of fear conditioning, which does not require awareness. The amygdala influences conscious recollection of events that are emotional and important. It can also modulate perception and attention by increasing the likelihood that emotional information in the environment will break through to cognitive awareness.

Keywords:   emotion, cognition, neuroscience, amygdala, cognitive awareness, nonhuman animals, fear conditioning, conscious recollection, perception, attention

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