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You aren't at the mercy of your emotions -- your brain creates them | Lisa Feldman Barrett

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You aren't at the mercy of your emotions -- your brain creates them | Lisa Feldman Barrett

Can you look at someone's face and know what they're feeling? Does everyone experience happiness, sadness and anxiety the same way? What are emotions anyway? For the past 25 years, psychology professor Lisa Feldman Barrett has mapped facial expressions, scanned brains and analyzed hundreds of physiology studies to understand what emotions really are. She shares the results of her exhaustive research -- and explains how we may have more control over our emotions than we think.

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Lisa Feldman Barrett: How the Brain Creates Emotions | MIT Artificial General Intelligence (AGI)

This is a guest talk part of MIT course 6.S099: Artificial General Intelligence. This class is free and open to everyone. Our goal is to take an engineering approach to exploring possible paths toward building human-level intelligence for a better world.

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The Three Big Myths About Emotions, Gender and Brains | Lisa Feldman Barrett

Many of our most basic beliefs about emotion are myths. Neuroscientist, psychologist, and author Lisa Feldman Barrett explains why our facial expressions can be misleading and how gender bias plays a crucial role in misunderstanding people. Women aren't more emotional than men. And this is the science that proves it.

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Lisa Feldman Barrett, "How Emotions Are Made"



Until recently, emotions were considered mere physical reflexes to experience. But research is gradually revealing that feelings are in fact complex responses to stimuli. Barrett, University Distinguished Professor of Psychology at Northeastern University, who has appointments at Harvard Medical School and Massachusetts General Hospital in Psychiatry and Radiology, is one of the leading experts in this new science of emotions. Her book outlines the developing theory of emotion as behavior constructed in the moment it occurs by the activation of diverse sectors of the brain, in tandem with prior learning. This is a major paradigm shift, Barrett shows, and she describes the practical ramifications not only for psychology, but for parenting, law enforcement, health care, national security, and much else.

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Lisa Feldman Barrett: Emotion inside out

Professor Lisa Feldman Barrett,
Northeastern University and Massachusetts General Hospital, USA gave her lecture entitled Emotion inside out: From cartoon neuroscience to the predictive brain March 13 2018. Among many things, she has gained a lot of attention with her recently published book How emotions are made: The secret life of the brain (2017).

Lisa Feldman Barrett – Emotions: Facts vs. Fictions

In this talk, we’ll explore a series of experiments about emotion whose conclusions seem to defy common sense. We’ll learn that common sense is wrong, and has been for 2000 years. In the process, we’ll dispel four of the most widespread fictions about emotions that lurk in classrooms, boardrooms and bedrooms around the world. We’ll then explore a radically new scientific understanding of what emotions are and how they work.
Lisa Feldman Barrett, Northeastern University
March 28, 2019

The 2019 Rotman Lecture was co-sponsored by the London Public Library and The Brain and Mind Institute at Western University.

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Lisa Feldman Barrett - How Emotions are Made: The Secret Life of the Brain

Lisa Feldman Barrett, PhD, is a University Distinguished Professor of Psychology at Northeastern University, with appointments at Harvard Medical School and Massachusetts General Hospital. In addition to the book How Emotions are Made: The Secret Life of the Brain, Dr. Barrett has published over 200 peer-reviewed, scientific papers appearing in Science, Nature Neuroscience, and other top journals in psychology and cognitive neuroscience, as well as six academic volumes published by Guilford Press. She has also given a popular TED talk.

Dr. Barrett received a National Institutes of Health Director’s Pioneer Award for her revolutionary research on emotion in the brain. These highly competitive, multimillion dollar awards are given to scientists of exceptional creativity who are expected to transform biomedical and behavioral research.

Among her many accomplishments, Dr. Barrett has testified before Congress, presented her research to the FBI, consulted to the National Cancer Institute, appeared on Through The Wormhole with Morgan Freeman and The Today Show with Maria Shriver, and been a featured guest on public television and worldwide radio programs. She is also an elected fellow of the American Academy of Arts & Sciences and the Royal Society of Canada.

Transcending the Tower: A Panel on Emotions w/ Myisha Cherry, Lisa Feldman-Barrett, and Ryan Enos

The Mind, Brain & Behavior Graduate Steering Committee at Harvard University presents Transcending the Tower: A Panel on the Emotions and Writing for the Public featuring Myisha Cherry (Harvard), Ryan Enos (Harvard) and Lisa Feldman-Barrett (Northeastern).

Public demand for new theories on the connections between mind, brain and behavior is on the rise as technology continues to shape our societal practices. Research on the nature, morality, rationality, and influence of the emotions has been a hotbed of interdisciplinary discussion in particular. In light of the increasing popularity of research on the emotions in public settings we interrogate its public discussion:

How can we best share academic research on the emotions?
What are the responsibilities of scholars who write for the public?
What theories of and approaches to the emotions have been most enlightening, emancipatory, revealing in recent discussions?
Where ought emotion research go in social science, in psychological science and in philosophy?

🌟LISA FELDMAN BARRETT: The Secret Behind Your Emotions & What It Means 4 You! How Emotions Are Made

How Emotions Are Made:

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SHOW INTRODUCTION:
If you’ve ever wondered how emotions work, and what it means for all of us, then do we have the how emotions are made show for you.

Today I’ll be talking with Dr. Lisa Feldman Barrett, an NIH award winning researcher and a university distinguished professor of psychology at Northeastern University about her new book, How Emotions are Made.

And that’s just what I want to talk with her about, about the secret life of the brain and what in the world it means for us.

That plus we’ll talk about Rowdy the dog, chimps and bonobos, right and left dog-tail wagging, eating baby bees, infant baby expressions, mistaking the flu for the love, and what in the word, fuzzy cheese pizza vomit and edible baby-poo have to do with anything!

MORE ON DR. LISA FELDMAN BARRETT:

Lisa Feldman Barrett, PhD, is a University Distinguished Professor of Psychology at Northeastern University, with appointments at Harvard Medical School and Massachusetts General Hospital. In addition to the book How Emotions are Made: The Secret Life of the Brain, Dr. Barrett has published over 200 peer-reviewed, scientific papers appearing in Science, Nature Neuroscience, and other top journals in psychology and cognitive neuroscience, as well as six academic volumes published by Guilford Press.

Dr. Barrett received a National Institutes of Health Director’s Pioneer Award for her revolutionary research on emotion in the brain. These highly competitive, multimillion dollar awards are given to scientists of exceptional creativity who are expected to transform biomedical and behavioral research.

Among her many accomplishments, Dr. Barrett has testified before Congress, presented her research to the FBI, consulted to the National Cancer Institute, appeared on Through The Wormhole with Morgan Freeman, and been a featured guest on public television and worldwide radio programs. She is also an elected fellow of Canada’s most prestigious national organization of scholars, the Royal Society of Canada (analogous to the National Academy in the United States).


Key Topics:
What do 8 “failures” at the University of Waterloo have to do with anything
Why is anxiety and depression so confusing to people
Can people really recognize their emotional states?
Are there only a handful of emotional states?
Are emotional states hardwired into the brain at birth
Do people worldwide all have the same emotions
Is there a biological finger print for different emotional states
How is the brain creating emotion on the fly
Why is what we’ve learned about emotions so important in experiencing emotions
What do social constructs have to do with our emotions
What is the wiring in infant brains
How do our brains wire themselves to mirror the social and physical environment they grow up it
Why the big innovation of brains is not cognition but is brain plasticity
How is the brain guessing what’s going to happen next, and how does it make sense of these sensations
What do the sensations of attraction and the flu have to do with one another?
Why our confidence to read people can get us in real trouble
Why are women more likely to die from heart disease than men
What does emotional stereotyping have to do with women
Why is there a glass ceiling for women in their career, and what’s the difference between female expressiveness and male expressiveness
How does this emotional bias play out in elections with Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump?
What’s the danger or false perception of an amygdala response?
Why the amygdala is not really the home of fear, emotion, or irrationality, and what understanding this really means for us.
What does the limbic system really mean?
What in the world is the political flu and what does it have to do with our emotions?
How can we protect our emotional state?
What it means to titrate our exposure to negativity?
What’s the importance of mindfulness?
How is gratitude an antidote to acrimony?
Where does compassion fit into things?
What to do when your brain is mobilizing the body to do something
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How your emotions change the shape of your heart | Sandeep Jauhar

Visit to get our entire library of TED Talks, subtitles, translations, personalized Talk recommendations and more.

A record of our emotional life is written on our hearts, says cardiologist and author Sandeep Jauhar. In a stunning talk, he explores the mysterious ways our emotions impact the health of our hearts -- causing them to change shape in response to grief or fear, to literally break in response to emotional heartbreak -- and calls for a shift in how we care for our most vital organ.

The TED Talks channel features the best talks and performances from the TED Conference, where the world's leading thinkers and doers give the talk of their lives in 18 minutes (or less). Look for talks on Technology, Entertainment and Design -- plus science, business, global issues, the arts and more. You're welcome to link to or embed these videos, forward them to others and share these ideas with people you know. For more information on using TED for commercial purposes (e.g. employee learning, in a film or online course), please submit a Media Request here:

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Lisa Feldman Barrett: From Essences to Concepts—A Brain-based Understanding of Emotion

Lisa Feldman Barrett, Ph.D, the University Distinguished Professor of Psychology and Director of the Interdisciplinary Affective Science Laboratory (IASLab) at Northeastern University, spoke on October 29, 2018, at UVA's Rotunda.
Barrett's research focuses on the nature of emotion from both psychological and neuroscience perspectives. She has been called the most important affective scientist of our time and the deepest thinker on the nature of emotion since Darwin. Barrett has been honored with election to numerous scientific societies, including the American Academy of Arts and Sciences and the Royal Society of Canada.

For more information, visit

Dr. Lisa Feldman Barrett: "Can Machines Perceive Emotion?" | Talks at Google

Many tech companies are trying to build machines that detect people's emotions, using techniques from artificial intelligence. Some companies claim to have succeeded already. Dr. Lisa Feldman Barrett evaluates these claims against the latest scientific evidence on emotion. What does it mean to detect emotion in a human face? How often do smiles express happiness and scowls express anger? And what are emotions, scientifically speaking?

Lisa Feldman Barrett (lisafeldmanbarrett.com) has been studying emotion for over 25 years and is the author of How Emotions are Made: The Secret Life of the Brain. She is a University Distinguished Professor of Psychology at Northeastern University, with research positions in psychiatry and radiology at Massachusetts General Hospital and Harvard Medical School. Dr. Barrett has published over 200 peer-reviewed research papers in top journals on emotion, psychology, and neuroscience.

Get the book:
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Lisa Feldman Barrett - The Neuroscience Behind Emotions

LISA FELDMAN BARRETT, PhD, is a University Distinguished Professor of Psychology at Northeastern University, with appointments at Harvard Medical School and Massachusetts General Hospital in Psychiatry and Radiology. She received a NIH Director’s Pioneer Award for her research on emotion in the brain, and the 2018 APS Mentor Award For Lifetime Achievement.

**CONTEST** Click here to win a copy of Dr. Barrett’s “How Emotions Are Made

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Some questions Connor asks...

Could you share a defining moment for you? - 3:33

Have you seen a lot of people go through self-deception? - 8:42

What is the 2000 year-old assumption? - 10:58

In your book you mention ”emotions are constructed by our brains can you unpack that idea? - 19:23

Is it possible to change your emotional state based on your physiology? - 27:43

Did you enjoy the podcast?

If so please leave us a review on iTunes or Stitcher. It helps our podcast get into the ears of new listeners, which expands the ManTalks community!  

Thank You to the Team:

Editing & Mixing by: Aaron Johnson

Simulation (How Emotions are Made)

Neuroscientist Lisa Feldman Barrett, author of the book How Emotions are Made: The Secret Life of the Brain, explains how your brain constructs simulations before it receives information from the outside world.

Are our emotions universal? | Robert Wright & Lisa Feldman Barrett [The Wright Show]

00:38 Lisa’s new book How Emotions are Made
14:11 Can we truly feel an emotion before we can name it?
31:06 Is it true that the !Kung people feel no fear?’
41:42 Fear in the body, the brain, and in concept
49:46 Do animals have emotions as we know them?
59:09 Lisa’s advice for young scientists: Keep it empirical

Robert Wright (Bloggingheads.tv, The Evolution of God, Nonzero, Why Buddhism Is True) and Lisa Feldman Barrett (How Emotions are Made, lisafeldmanbarrett.com)

Recorded on August 22, 2017

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How Emotions are Made by Lisa Feldman Barrett Book Review

A review of the book 'How Emotions are Made' : The Secret Life of the Brain by Lisa Feldman Barrett. The book challenges the essentialist view of emotions that says they are hardwired into our brain, and says they are socially constructed by an active mind that has taken in social concepts.

Making Emotion (How Emotions are Made)

Neuroscientist Lisa Feldman Barrett, author of the book How Emotions are Made: The Secret Life of the Brain, shows how the brain constructs an instance of emotion.

Ask How, Not Where (How Emotions are Made)

Neuroscientist Lisa Feldman Barrett explains the current scientific revolution in emotion science. Instead of asking where in the brain emotions can be found, neuroscience is now asking a better question, how emotions are constructed by the brain.

Dr. Barrett is the author of the book How Emotions are Made: The Secret Life of the Brain.

How Emotions Are Made by Lisa Feldman Barrett. A Review.

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The first of my book reviews. Feedback and comments would be lovely.

From the site

A new theory of how the brain constructs emotions that could revolutionize psychology, health care, law enforcement, and our understanding of the human mind

Emotions feel automatic, like uncontrollable reactions to things we think and experience. Scientists have long supported this assumption by claiming that emotions are hardwired in the body or the brain. Today, however, the science of emotion is in the midst of a revolution on par with the discovery of relativity in physics and natural selection in biology--and this paradigm shift has far-reaching implications for us all.

Leading the charge is psychologist and neuroscientist Lisa Feldman Barrett, whose theory of emotion is driving a deeper understanding of the mind and brain, and shedding new light on what it means to be human. Her research overturns the widely held belief that emotions are housed in different parts of the brain and are universally expressed and recognized. Instead, she has shown that emotion is constructed in the moment, by core systems that interact across the whole brain, aided by a lifetime of learning. This new theory means that you play a much greater role in your emotional life than you ever thought. Its repercussions are already shaking the foundations not only of psychology but also of medicine, the legal system, child-rearing, meditation, and even airport security.

Why do emotions feel automatic? Does rational thought really control emotion? How does emotion affect disease? How can you make your children more emotionally intelligent? How Emotions Are Made answers these questions and many more, revealing the latest research and intriguing practical applications of the new science of emotion, mind, and brain.

Lisa Feldman Barrett video keynote @ #ESCAN2018

From essences to predictions: A brain-based understanding of emotion

Lisa Feldman Barrett studied Psychology at University of Toronto. She then moved University of Waterloo where she obtained her PhD degree in Clinical Psychology. Since 2003 she is Professor of Psychology at Boston College. Her research addresses that question from both psychological and neuroscience perspectives, ultimately working toward a general framework for understanding how the brain creates the mind.

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