Role Of Emotions Essay

1445 words - 6 pages

Hoang Le Minh 12MRLVType 1: The validity and reliability of emotion as a WOK-is it the superior or inferior WOK?To what extent can emotion be superior/preferable/more reliable as a way of knowing?To what extent can emotion be an obstacle in the acquisition of knowledge?To what extent can emotion distort other ways of knowing?How true is the assertion that knowledge can be obtained independent of emotion?To what extent is an emotional association necessary in the ownership of knowledge?Type 2: The opposition between emotion and reason, their incompatibilityTo what extent can reason and emotion be seen as rigid dichotomies?Emotion is a state of feeling in response to a stimulus. How does emotion impact our knowledge?To what extent can emotion be preferable and more reliable as a way of knowing?The role of emotions from an epistemological standpoint has traditionally been overlooked, often considered to be irrelevant in the obtainment of knowledge. Kant contends that "Emotions are entirely distinct from reason and rationality. They do not yield knowledge." This essay aims to consider whether or not emotion may actually be superior as a WOK in the pursuit of knowledge.Emotions, particularly empathy in literature, are capable of providing us with a deeper understanding of the authorial intentions behind a literary work. One of my Literature exams contained an empathetic essay prompt, which required me to emulate a character's voice to demonstrate my understanding of the text. Many teachers and students presume that the task necessitates an emotional connection and knowledge of how a character would be feeling at a point in the story. It can be argued that readers who fail to engage with a text on an emotional level have not truly "known" the text, and thus, emotion is the preferable WOK in this circumstance.However, a possible counterclaim to this would be that emotion is not the only way to succeed in this exercise. A pertinent literature student should be able to discern signs embedded in the text and make appropriate inferences and deductions. Language as a WOK could be used instead; by looking for certain clues that elicited certain feelings, one can still "know" how the characters feel without actually feeling those emotions. The understanding of a text can only be based so much on empathy; the remaining must be left to the reader's imagination, reason, and language. I, for example, may sympathise with Willy Loman's disappointment in his sons, but I will never truly understand the rationale for his suicide because I myself have never contemplated such notions. If one knows that Willy Loman is a man in desperation, but has no direct emotional experience with desperation, the knowledge that one does have cannot be condemned as inadequate. Thus, emotion is not absolutely imperative to the understanding and "knowledge" of a literary text.On one occasion, after our class critiqued a model essay, we concluded that the student's empathetic response was...

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