Emotions are now the centre of attention in a number of different fields. Emotion theory draws on a range of neighbouring disciplines, including philosophy, social and cognitive psychology, biology and neuroscience, historical and literary studies. Contemporary approaches to emotions recognize their motivational, intentional, and phenomenological aspects in ways which drive no categorical wedge between reason and passion, mind and body, cognition and affectivity, action and reaction, organism and environment.  The same is true of some classical approaches to affectivity in the history of philosophy, most notably Aristotle’s and that of the American pragmatists, but also including Cartesian and post-Cartesian debates on the relation between the body and the mind in the early modern period.

Bringing together researchers from different backgrounds and integrating theoretical and empirical approaches, the Centre has a broad thematic remit and promotes research in or across the fields of aestethics, AI, cognitive psychology, ethics, history of philosophy, media studies, philosophical psychology, philosophy of mind, philosophy of science, psycholinguistics, semiotics, social psychology, and sociology. Also in view of the acquisition of the FaceReader software from the Dutch company Noldus, the most widely used software in the world for the study of facial expressions that reveal emotions (software that, among other things, codified the results of Paul Ekman’s work), the Centre promotes research related to emotion recognition, the use of emotions in the public sphere, their neural correlates, and their relationship with all other dimensions of knowledge and cognition.

The activities of the Centre relate to the following research areas:

•             4E (embodied, embedded, extended, enacted) approaches to emotion and affectivity

•             Affective robotics

•             Emotion and affectivity in an evolutionary perspective

•             Emotion and communication

•             Emotion and knowledge

•             Emotion and language

•             Emotion and perception

•             Emotion and value(s)

•             Emotion in the history of philosophy

•             Emotion recognition (using the software FaceReader by Noldus)

•             Emotions and decision-making

•             Emotions and marketing

•             Emotions and psychopathology

•             Emotions in the media

•             Expression of emotions and facial mimicry

•             Methodology of historical and cross-cultural research on emotion

•             Semantics and semiotics of emotion