Contrasting and categorization of emotions

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The contrasting and categorisation of emotions describes how emotions are thought to relate to each other. Various recent proposals of such groupings are described in the following sections.

Contrasting basic emotions[edit]

The following table,[1] based on a wide review of current theories, identifies and contrasts the fundamental emotions according to a set of definite criteria. The three key criteria used include mental experiences that:

  1. have a strongly motivating subjective quality like pleasure or pain;
  2. are in response to some event or object that is either real or imagined;
  3. motivate particular kinds of behaviour.

The combination of these attributes distinguish the emotions from sensations, feelings and moods.

Kind of Emotion Positive Emotions Negative Emotions
Related to Object Properties Interest, curiosity Alarm, panic
Attraction, desire, admiration Aversion, disgust, revulsion
Surprise, amusement Indifference, familiarity, habituation
Future Appraisal Hope Fear
Event-Related Gratitude, thankfulness Anger, rage
Joy, elation, triumph, jubilation Sorrow, grief
Patience Frustration, disappointment
Self-Appraisal Humility Remembering who you are Pride, Thinking or acting in a way above others
Social Charity Avarice, greed, miserliness, envy, jealousy
Sympathy Cruelty
Cathected Love Hate

HUMAINE's proposal for EARL[edit]

The emotion annotation and representation language (EARL) proposed by the Human-Machine Interaction Network on Emotion (HUMAINE) classifies 48 emotions.[2]

Parrott's emotions by groups[edit]

A tree-structured list of emotions was described in Shaver et al. (1987),[3] and also featured in Parrott (2001).[4]

Primary emotion Secondary emotion Tertiary emotion
Liking Affection Adoration · Fondness · Liking · Attractiveness · Caring · Tenderness · Compassion · Sentimentality
Lust/Sexual desire Desire · Passion · Infatuation
Longing Longing
Joy Cheerfulness Amusement · Bliss · Gaiety · Glee · Jolliness · Joviality · Joy · Delight · Enjoyment · Gladness · Happiness · Jubilation · Elation · Satisfaction · Ecstasy · Euphoria
Zest Enthusiasm · Zeal · Excitement · Thrill · Exhilaration
Contentment Pleasure
Pride Triumph
Optimism Eagerness · Hope
Enthrallment Enthrallment · Rapture
Relief Relief
Surprise Surprise Amazement · Astonishment
Anger Irritability Aggravation · Agitation · Annoyance · Grouchy · Grumpy · Crosspatch
Exasperation Frustration
Rage Anger · Outrage · Fury · Wrath · Hostility · Ferocity · Bitter · Hatred · Scorn · Spite · Vengefulness · Dislike · Resentment
Disgust Revulsion · Contempt · Loathing
Envy Jealousy
Torment Torment
Sadness Suffering Agony · Anguish · Hurt
Sadness Depression · Despair · Gloom · Glumness · Unhappy · Grief · Sorrow · Woe · Misery · Melancholy
Disappointment Dismay · Displeasure
Shame Guilt · Regret · Remorse
Neglect Alienation · Defeatism · Dejection · Embarrassment · Homesickness · Humiliation · Insecurity · Insult · Isolation · Loneliness · Rejection
Sympathy Pity · Mono no aware · Sympathy
Fear Horror Alarm · Shock · Fear · Fright · Horror · Terror · Panic · Hysteria · Mortification
Nervousness Anxiety · Suspense · Uneasiness · Apprehension (fear) · Worry · Distress · Dread

Plutchik's wheel of emotions[edit]

Plutchik's Wheel of Emotions

In 1980 Robert Plutchik constructed a wheel-like diagram of emotions visualising eight basic emotions, plus eight derivative emotions each composed of two basic ones.[5] He also theorized sixteen "Primary level" and "Secondary level" emotions, whose components were farther apart.[6]

Basic emotion Basic opposite
Serenity Pensiveness
Joy Sadness
Ecstasy Grief
Acceptance Boredom
Trust Disgust
Admiration Loathing
Apprehension Annoyance
Fear Anger
Terror Rage
Distraction Interest
Surprise Anticipation
Amazement Vigilance
Human feelings (results of emotions) Emotions Opposite
Optimism Anticipation + Joy Disappointment
Fatalism Anticipation + Trust Revulsion
Anxiety Anticipation + Fear Outrage
Love Joy + Trust Remorse
Guilt Joy + Fear Envy
Delight Joy + Surprise Pessimism
Submission Trust + Fear Contempt
Curiosity Trust + Surprise Cynism
Sentimentality Trust + Sadness Morbidness
Alarm Fear + Surprise Aggression
Despair Fear + Sadness Pride
Shame Fear + Disgust Dominance
Disappointment Surprise + Sadness Optimism
Revulsion Surprise + Disgust Fatalism
Outrage Surprise + Anger Anxiety
Remorse Sadness + Disgust Love
Envy Sadness + Anger Guilt
Pessimism Sadness + Anticipation Delight
Contempt Disgust + Anger Submission
Cynism Disgust + Anticipation Curiosity
Morbidness Disgust + Joy Sentimentality
Aggressiveness Anger + Anticipation Awe
Pride Anger + Joy Despair
Dominance Anger + Trust Shame

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Robinson, D. L. (2009). "Brain function, mental experience and personality". The Netherlands Journal of Psychology. pp. 152–167. 
  2. ^ "HUMAINE Emotion Annotation and Representation Language". Retrieved June 30, 2006. 
  3. ^ Shaver, P.; Schwartz, J.; Kirson, D. & O'connor, C. (1987). "Emotion knowledge: further exploration of a prototype approach". Journal of Personality and Social Psychology. 52 (6): 1061. doi:10.1037/0022-3514.52.6.1061. PMID 3598857. 
  4. ^ Parrott, W. (2001). Emotions in Social Psychology. Key Readings in Social Psychology. Philadelphia: Psychology Press. ISBN 978-0863776830. 
  5. ^ Plutchik, R. "The Nature of Emotions". American Scientist. Archived from the original on July 16, 2001. Retrieved 14 April 2011. 
  6. ^ Atifa Athar; M. Saleem Khan; Khalil Ahmed; Aiesha Ahmed; Nida Anwar (June 2011). "A Fuzzy Inference System for Synergy Estimation of Simultaneous Emotion Dynamics in Agents". International Journal of Scientific & Engineering Research. 2 (6). 

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