Affect Imagery Consciousness: Volume I: The Positive Affects and Volume II: The Negative Affects

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"...brilliant..."--Malcolm Gladwell, Author of Blink

"The writings for which this essay is offered as a Prologue consumed him from the mid-1950s through the end of his life in 1991. Knowing it was his "lifework," Tomkins conflated "life" and "work," reifying the superstition that its completion would equal death and refusing to release for publication long-completed material. He knew the risks associated with this obsessive, neurotic behavior, and the results were as bad as predicted. The first two volumes of Affect Imagery Consciousness (AIC) were released in 1962 and 1963,
Volume III in 1991 shortly before he succumbed to a particularly virulent strain of small cell lymphoma, and
Volume IV a year after his death. This last book contains Tomkins's understanding of neocortical cognition,
ideas that are even now exciting, but until this current publication of his work as a single supervolume, almost nobody has read it. The bulk of his audience had died along with the enthusiasm generated by his ideas. Big science is now more a matter of big machines and unifocal discoveries as the basis for pars pro toto reasoning than big ideas based on the assembly and analysis of all that is known. Tomkins ignored nothing from any science past or present that might lead him toward a more certain understanding of the mind. Every idea,
every theory deserved attention if only because significant observations can loiter in blind alleys."--From the Prologue by Donald L. Nathanson, MD

Volume 1 of Springer's magisterial new two-volume edition of Tomkins's magnum opus comprises The Positive Affects and The Negative Affects.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780826144041
  • Publisher: Springer Publishing Company, Incorporated
  • Publication date: 2/15/2008
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Pages: 678
  • Sales rank: 1,103,552
  • Product dimensions: 7.00 (w) x 10.00 (h) x 1.44 (d)

Meet the Author

Silvan S. Tomkins, PhD, (1911-1991) was one of the most influential theorists of 20th-century psychology and is generally considered the founder of modern affective science. He was educated at the University of Pennsylvania, where he studied psychology and playwriting as an undergraduate, then philosophy as a graduate student. In 1937, while attending Harvard University on a post-doctoral fellowship, he met Professor Henry A. Murray, the prominent personality theorist and then director of Harvard's Psychological Clinic. Under Murray's influence, Tomkins dedicated his professional career to studying personality, motivation, and emotion.

From 1947 until his retirement in the 1975, Tomkins taught at Princeton University, The CUNY Graduate Center, and Rutgers University. According to a paper he published in the Journal of Personality and Social Psychology in 1981, he claimed that the question that guided his professional career was "what do human beings really want?" In addition to a Career Scientist Award from the National Institute of Mental Health, Tomkins received the Bruno Klopfer Distinguished Contribution Award of the Society for Personality Assessment, The Distinguished Contribution Award from Division 12 of the American Psychological Association (APA), and the Henry A. Murray Award of APA's Division 8. In the August 5, 2002 edition of The New Yorker, Malcolm Gladwell published "The Naked Face" -- an article about Tomkins's influential work on nonverbal behavior and deception. The article was later reproduced in Gladwell's best selling book Blink, which sold over 1 million copies in 2005 and introduced Tomkins's ideas to a new generation of social and behavioral scientists.

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Table of Contents

  1. Prologue by, Donald L. Nathanson, MD





  2. Introduction: Consciousness and Affect in Behaviorism
    and Psychoanalysis

  3. Drive-Affect Interactions: Motivational Information of Time and Place
    of Response-When, Where, What, to What

  4. Amplification, Attenuation and Affects

  5. Freedom of the Will and the Structure of the Affect System

  6. Evolution and Affect

  7. Visibility and Invisibility of the Affect System

  8. The Primary Site of the Affects: The Face

  9. The Innate Determinants of Affect

  10. Affect Dynamics

  11. Interest-Excitement

  12. Enjoyment-Joy and the Smiling Response: Developmental,
    Physiological and Comparative Aspects

  13. The Dynamics of Enjoyment-Joy: The Social Bond

  14. Surprise-Startle: The Resetting Affect




  16. Distress-Anguish and the Crying Response

  17. Distress-Anguish Dynamics: The Adult Consequences of the
    Socialization of Crying

  18. Shame-Humiliation Versus Contempt-Disgust: The Nature
    of the Response

  19. Shame-Humiliation and the Taboo on Looking

  20. The Sources of Shame-Humiliation, Contempt-Disgust and

  21. The Impact of Humiliation: General Images and Strategies

  22. Continuities and Discontinuities in the Impact of Humiliation:
    The Intrusion and Iceberg Models

  23. Continuities andDiscontinuities in the Impact of Humiliation:
    The Monopolistic and Snowball Models

  24. The Structure of Monopolistic Humiliation Theory, Including the
    Paranoid Posture and Paranoid Schizophrenia

  25. Continuities and Discontinuities in the Impact of Humiliation:
    Some Specific Examples of the Paranoid Posture

  26. References-Volumes I and II

    Author Index I-1

    Subject Index I-6
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