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Emotion and Imagination


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Table of Contents

Preface vii Part I The range of emotions Refined emotions 3 Imagining in emotions 8 Seeing as 17 Emotions and thinking 22 Keeping mood and emotion distinct 29 Pressure 37 Categories of emotion 44 Part II Imagining vile emotions Imagining what we shouldn?t feel 53 Imagining minds: emotions and perspectives 56 Imagining a point of view 63 Misimagination 74 Imagining invented characters: fiction and philosophy 83 Invisible everyday failures 88 Imagining awful actions 94 Sympathy versus empathy 101 The tradeoff 108 Part III Memotions The threat of irrelevance 117 Retracting emotions 122 Emotions with multiple points of view 128 The variety of moral emotions 134 Emotional learning 142 Smugness 149 Part IV Families of emotions The ideas and the questions 157 Shame, regret, embarrassment, remorse 159 Shame-like versus regret-like 164 Ghosts 170 Looking backward and looking inward 175 Gaps in the pattern: shame versus guilt 180 Two kinds of pride 184 The smug family 189 Dark humour, radical possibilities 194 Shaping our emotions 198 End: a virtue if imagination 206 Notes 210 References 219 Index 229

About the Author

Adam Morton is visiting emeritus professor at the University of British Columbia.


"Friends of Adam Morton's work will find familiar strengths in this essay in moral psychology: detailed attention to the peculiarities of cases and a hostility to easy formulations, matched by lucid arguments that keep the general aim in view. He has surprising things to say about imagining; mice do it, apparently. But we, unlike mice, can use imagination to help to shape our own emotions, and hence to structure our own moral lives. All in all, this is a splendid attempt to think through the complex issue of what the imagination can and cannot do for us." Gregory Currie, University of Nottingham "Adam Morton is a pioneering and original thinker whose provocative and insightful work on emotion and imagination has pushed the field in important new directions. It's exciting to have a book-length treatment of these issues from such an interesting and creative mind." Tamar Gendler, Yale University "Morton takes us on a journey of the imagination into the imagination. His kaleidoscope of examples compels us to believe that emotions involve the imagination in sometimes unexpected, but always fascinating ways. A great read!" Heidi Maibom, Carleton University

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