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  Trames
A Journal of the Humanities and Social Sciences

ISSN 1736-7514 (electronic)  ISSN 1406-0922 (print)
Published since 1997

Trames
A Journal of the Humanities and Social Sciences

ISSN 1736-7514 (electronic)  ISSN 1406-0922 (print)
Published since 1997

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THE STRUCTURE OF ESTONIAN CONCEPTS OF EMOTION: A SELF-ORGANIZATIONAL APPROACH; pp. 382–399

(Full article in PDF format) DOI: 10.3176/tr.2008.4.02


Authors

Ene Vainik, Toomas Kirt

Abstract

The aim of the study was to test the hypothesis that the way of approaching Estonian concepts of emotion may influence their emergent structure. One hundred participants assessed the semantics of 24 words in two different tests that provided access to the concepts from two different levels of representation of knowledge of emotions. The first task addressed the semantic interrelations of emotion terms (synonymy and antonymy) and the second addressed the qualities of emotional experience as measured on seven scales. The results were visualized by self-organizing maps, revealing two visually different topological layouts, where coherence of the conceptual structure was recognizable only in general terms. Two main clusters, positivity and negativity, were found in both maps. In addition, a cluster of alertness emerged while the concepts were accessed through the interrelations of emotion words. There was much less coherence for local neighbourhood relations. That is, relations which coincided on both maps were identified only in approximately half of the cases.

Keywords

emotion concepts, self-organizing maps, conceptual representation of emotions, Estonian language.

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