Main Article Content
The traditional idea of emotion and cognition in Western culture is that emotion is separate from, and inferior to, cognition. This article reviews results from experimental neuroscience that refute this notion and support the idea that emotion and cognition are partners that depend on each other for organized decision making. Cooperation between cortical and subcortical parts of the brain is essential for behavior that adapts successfully to the environment in pursuit of goals. Concurrently, there has been a rich development of computational neural network theories that combine emotion as a source of values with reason as a process of discerning the actions that will best implement those values. Incorporating the partnership view of emotion and cognition encourages integration of those two aspects of the psyche, with benefit both for mental illness treatment and for making society more cooperative.
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