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The Archaeology of Mind

Neuroevolutionary Origins of Human Emotions

Norton Series on Interpersonal Neurobiology

Lucy Biven (Author), Jaak Panksepp (Author, Washington State Univ.'s College of Vet Medicine)

 

A look at the seven emotional systems of the brain by the researcher who discovered them.

What makes us happy? What makes us sad? How do we come to feel a sense of enthusiasm? What fills us with lust, anger, fear, or tenderness? Traditional behavioral and cognitive neuroscience have yet to provide satisfactory answers. The Archaeology of Mind presents an affective neuroscience approach—which takes into consideration basic mental processes, brain functions, and emotional behaviors that all mammals share—to locate the neural mechanisms of emotional expression. It reveals—for the first time—the deep neural sources of our values and basic emotional feelings.

This book elaborates on the seven emotional systems that explain how we live and behave. These systems originate in deep areas of the brain that are remarkably similar across all mammalian species. When they are disrupted, we find the origins of emotional disorders:

- SEEKING: how the brain generates a euphoric and expectant response

- FEAR: how the brain responds to the threat of physical danger and death

- RAGE: sources of irritation and fury in the brain

- LUST: how sexual desire and attachments are elaborated in the brain

- CARE: sources of maternal nurturance

- GRIEF: sources of non-sexual attachments

- PLAY: how the brain generates joyous, rough-and-tumble interactions

- SELF: a hypothesis explaining how affects might be elaborated in the brain

The book offers an evidence-based evolutionary taxonomy of emotions and affects and, as such, a brand-new clinical paradigm for treating psychiatric disorders in clinical practice.

Book Details

  • Hardcover
  • September 2012
  • ISBN 978-0-393-70531-7
  • 6.6 × 9.6 in / 592 pages
  • Sales Territory: Worldwide

Endorsements & Reviews

“Eloquently written, this brilliant text firmly incorporates laboratory animal research, as well as neuroscientific human studies, to plumb the recesses of the mammalian brain to expound our understanding of human emotionality. . . . This body of work reveals how basic mammalian emotions are shared amongst mammalian species, debunking the illusion of the uniqueness of human emotional experiences while aiding in our understanding of emotions, psychopathologies, and treatment capabilities.” — New Jersey Psychologist

“Without any sense of exaggeration, this is a revolutionary book. The implications of its understanding of human nature are profound and they open the possibility of a new way of looking at ourselves – and other animals – that is solidly based on scientific method. . . . The Archaeology of Mind is required reading for anyone who wants an in-depth understanding of the affective core that we all share, and that is central to who we are.” — The APPPAH Newsletter

“[O]ffers a very valuable updating of an essential, richly researched neuroscientific perspective on our emotional lives.” — Society of Analytical Psychology (UK)

“[A] successful overview of the affective systems . . . . [O]f interest not only to basic scientists interested in preclinical modeling but also to clinicians and clinical researchers interested in the neurobiology of addiction, emotional disorders, and novel pharmacological and psychosocial interventions.” — Journal of Nervous and Mental Disease

“[W]ill appeal to anyone who seeks to understand the origins of our emotions and the mechanisms that tie our affective experiences to our behaviors. Clinicians and psychotherapists are an obvious potential audience. Panksepp and Biven . . . contend that an affective neuroscience perspective has a lot to offer to psychiatric research and practice. . . . [T]his text is accessible to a host of researchers trained in that theoretical tradition, including, but not limited to, the rapidly growing community of evolutionary psychologists across diverse academic disciplines. . . . [W]ould be appropriate reading for an advanced undergraduate course or a graduate seminar across the many disciplines that are now adopting neuroscientific methods of inquiry to study human psychology and behavior.” — PsycCritiques

“Integrative, judicious, creative, welcoming of divergent perspectives, and very accessible, this is a grand synthesis and should be part of every library. . . . Essential. ” — CHOICE

“[A]n exhaustive work, covering a neglected and often misunderstood field . . . . Nowhere else will you really find due diligence done on the non-conscious biases of humans and animals . . . . [E]ssential reading, not only to us as mind professionals, but to teachers, parents, personal and physical trainers and coaches. Emotions are still everything, and vital to understanding why we are what we are, and why we do and have done, everything in the past and now. An amazing buy.” — Metapsychology Online Reviews

“The book will be of special interest to psychiatrists and other mental health professionals, but it is also accessible to students, parents, educators, and animal behaviorists. ” — Book News Inc.

“This is a highly original and exciting book. The vital distinction between eager anticipation and straightforward pleasure is only one among many of its important findings. The implications for clinical assessment and treatment, especially with depressed and cut-off patients, are profound.” — Anne Alvarez, PhD MACP, Consultant Child and Adolescent Psychotherapist, Tavistock Clinic, London

“Panksepp’s perspective on the continuity of animal and human minds has not received the attention it deserves. Here are the collected facts and the reasoning behind that compelling view. An indispensable volume. ” — Antonio Damasio, author, Self Comes to Mind; David Dornsife Professor of Neuroscience and Director, Brain and Creativity Institute, University of Southern California

“Immensely learned, consistently lucid, and truly groundbreaking. This book repeatedly elicited my ‘ahhhh, yes.’ For Panksepp and Biven, understanding the evolution of the brain holds the key to solving large-scale mysteries about how the brain works. Thus, they draw upon detailed comparisons of the behavior and functional anatomy in mammals, from rodents to humans. The upshot is a profoundly insightful theory, especially as it explains the complex relation between the subcortical platform of motivations, emotions, and automatic responses, and the evolutionary newcomer—the cortex— whose sophisticated contribution to control, evaluation and knowledge emerges as the brain learns and develops into maturity.” — Patricia Smith Churchland, Professor Emerita, University of California, San Diego

“Jaak Panksepp is the most important theorist of mental life that I have read since Freud. The impact of his scientific contributions will be felt for decades to come. His findings—so lucidly introduced in this accessible book with Lucy Biven—herald a new Golden Age. They are almost bound to place 21st-century psychiatry on a whole new foundation. In these pages, the supposed chasm between mind and brain disappears before your eyes, the veil is lifted, and new vistas appear before you. These vistas are the future of the science of the mind.” — Mark Solms, editor of Freud’s Complete Works

“This book has the capacity to integrate affective neuroscience into the consciousness of not only therapists, but also those interested in understanding depth motivation that sustains or pathologizes our every action and thought. It is a truly pioneering effort. Its deep truths about the origins of mind and feeling, and the implications for altering how we see ourselves over evolutionary time, connected to our fellow social mammals and birds, also has implications for how we treat our fellow travelers on this planet.” — Stuart Brown, MD, Founder and President, The National Institute for Play

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