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Affects as Central Organising and Integrating Factors a New Psychosocial/Biological Model of the Psyche

  • Luc Ciompi (a1)
Abstract

A new psychosocial/biological model of the psyche is proposed, in which the affects play a central role in organising and integrating cognition. The psyche is understood here as a complex hierarchical structure of affective/cognitive systems of reference (or ‘programmes for feeling, thinking, and behaviour’), generated by repetitive concrete action. These systems store past experience in their structure, and provide the functional basis for further cognition and communication. Affects endow these programmes with a specific qualitative value (such as motivation), connect cognitive elements synchronically and diachronically, and contribute to their storage and mobilisation according to context. They also participate in differentiating cognitive systems at higher levels of abstraction. These assumptions are supported by recent findings on the role of the limbic and hypothalamic system for the regulation of emotion, on neuronal plasticity, and on the phenomenon of state-dependent learning and memory. Refutable hypotheses are formulated for further research on the interaction of emotion and cognition.

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Affects as Central Organising and Integrating Factors a New Psychosocial/Biological Model of the Psyche

  • Luc Ciompi (a1)
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