welcome and question

A. J. Zolten (AJZOLTEN@cc1.uca.edu)
29 Sep 94 16:21:24 CST

First, welcome Bob, your input will be appreciated to the mailbase.

I've been mulling over some thoughts since Indianapolis and Larry
Leitner's plenary session entitled "Emotions, desires and passions:
Critical aspects of PCP", particularly because he used musical lyrics
to emphasize the felt experience of clients and his attempts to
communicate with them at the feeling level, rather than the
technical level of Kelly's formal theory.

Music appears to be this universal vehicle for the expression of
emotion, and I'm wondering if anyone within PCP or other
constructivist camps have written about it. If so, please post
refernces, if not please post your opinions regarding some of my

I see music as the perfect vehicle for the study of emotional
expression, particularly because of the complexity of the musical
exprerience. Whether it is powerful transformative Rite of Spring by
Stravinsky, the biting social/political commentary of Frank Zappa,
or the existential angst of Joe Jackson, music provides a voice for
the complex of feelings that is so common for so many people.

This type of emotional expression is so different from the type of
"emotion" generally studied in psychology (those "basics" of emotion,
understanding the response mode of emotion, and systems for
classifying emotion) that mainstream researchers in
emotion might say that my entire premise is F.O.S. I would imagine,
however, that constructivists might find credence to my assumption
that complexity of emotional experience is not only a valid point of
view, but that the investigation of this complex phenomena would be a
fruitful endeavor.

Certainly, understanding emotion by studying the musical experience
may require a new construction of both music and emotion, and I would
therefore ask for specifics regarding this. I need references
regarding constructivist views of emotion (I recall Dave Pfenninger
providing a verbal reference at Indy for someone in PCP who thought
of feeling in terms of "one who feels his/her way about in the
darkness" versus feeling/emotion being an epiphenomenon of cognition).

I tend to think of emotion as being a response, a realtime experience
that occursoutside of the response mode, and a proactivee experience
that is actively framed by the individual, depending on the context.

what do you think?