What are mixed feelings? Are they a matter of mere folk psychology or can they be specified with scientific rigor? What might their specification tell us about human beings and the typically fraught situations in which we find ourselves? In this presentation, Gross will address these questions by examining mixed feelings at the intersection of happiness psychology (Daniel Kahneman), cognitive science (Lawrence Barsalou et al.), and the sentimental novel satirized (Jane Austen). His conclusion will point to surprising ways in which writing and rhetoric constitute mixed feelings and other emotional phenomena in a manner that renders them available to cross-disciplinary analysis.
Daniel Gross is an Associate Professor of English and Director of Composition at the University of California, Irvine.