Philip A. Bralich, Ph.D. bralich at HAWAII.EDU
Wed May 7 01:51:30 UTC 1997

At 03:43 PM 5/6/97 -1000, Bert Peeters wrote:

>A little too basic, of course, but from whose point of view? From an
>one, I guess - if such a generalization is permissible. What is it that allows
>us to say that if something is "a little too basic to ignore FOR US" it is
>to be the same for everyone else? Emotions are a highly language-specific area,
>as recent research (e.g. by Anna Wierzbicka) has painstakingly tried to show.
>Typologies of emotions are nice, but most of them suffer from an ethnocentric
>bias and what a lot of people do is impose the English way of seeing things
>everything else. I'm not saying for one moment that there are cultures that
>don't have any form of envy or anger, or indeed Schadenfreude. What I'm saying
>is that they may have slightly different concepts, different forms of envy,
>and Schadenfreude. It would be wrong for us to try and force our world view in
>the realm of emotions upon theirs.

Who could argue with this?  Yet at some level I guess I am still
presupposing a strata of emotionality that is common to all
humans--what form that may take is unclear and whether or not
Schadefreude would make the cut into that strata is certainly not
clear either.  But surely there are at least a few emotions
that exist throughout the species and maybe in other species as

Phil Bralich

Philip A. Bralich, Ph.D.
President and CEO
Ergo Linguistic Technologies
2800 Woodlawn Drive, Suite 175
Honolulu, HI 96822

Tel: (808)539-3920
Fax: (808)5393924

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