Chapter

Passions of the Soul

Desmond M. Clarke

in Descartes's Theory of Mind

Published in print July 2003 | ISBN: 9780199261239
Published online November 2003 | e-ISBN: 9780191597213 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/0199261237.003.0005
 Passions of the Soul

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The Cartesian explanation of emotions relies on the theory of animal spirits that is central to his account of sensation and a hypothesis about innate desires and aversions. Emotions are the distinctive feelings we experience in response to the apparent perception of things that satisfy or frustrate our natural desires. These feelings, similar to internal sensations, correspond systematically to patterns in the flow of animal spirits from the heart to the brain.

Keywords: emotions; internal sensations; natural desires; passions

Chapter.  14263 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: History of Western Philosophy

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