AFFECT AND BEHAVIOR: ANXIETY AS A NEGATIVE AFFECT.
VANDERBILT UNIV NASHVILLE TENN
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The paper presents a model of the human being, stressing the importance of relatively independent but interacting personality subsystems. The homeostatic system the drive system, and the affect system are the three motivational systems. The central assumption is that the affect system is the primary motivational system affect is inherently motivating. The principal characteristics of the affect system and its relations with other personality subsystems are discussed. It was assumed that behavior that is uniquely human--constructive interpersonal relating, complex cognitive processes, creative activity--can be best understood and predicted when we conceive of affect as the motivating, cue-producing experience. The theory of anxiety fear-terror, as well as the activation of fear and fear activators is discussed with emphasis on other affects and cognitive constructions as causes of fear. The problems of fear phenomenology, and fear socialization are considered. The paper concludes with a discussion of affect-affect dynamics, the relationships of fear to other affects in both adaptive and maladaptive functioning. It is maintained that anxiety facilitates only defense or escape and that interest-excitement is the chief facilitator of constructive behavior and creative living. Author