Evaluations of emotions: Distinguishing between affective, behavioral and cognitive components

Netzer L., Gutentag T., Kim M. Y., Solak Şahi̇n N., Tamir M.

Personality and Individual Differences, vol.135, pp.13-24, 2018 (SSCI) identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 135
  • Publication Date: 2018
  • Doi Number: 10.1016/j.paid.2018.06.038
  • Journal Name: Personality and Individual Differences
  • Journal Indexes: Social Sciences Citation Index (SSCI), Scopus
  • Page Numbers: pp.13-24
  • Keywords: Attitude, Emotion, Evaluation, Emotion regulation, ATTITUDES, CULTURES
  • TED University Affiliated: Yes


© 2018 Elsevier LtdPeople cultivate attitudes toward various targets, including emotions. As any attitude object, attitudes toward emotions are likely constructed of affective (e.g., how much do I like or dislike emotion X?), behavioral (e.g., whether and how will I act in response to emotion X?), and cognitive (e.g., how good or bad do I think emotion X is?) components. We argue that existing measures of attitudes toward emotions (i.e., Attitudes Toward Emotions scales, ATE; Harmon-Jones et al., 2011) tap the affective and behavioral components. We advocate the importance of assessing the cognitive components of attitudes toward emotion. In four studies (N = 783), we establish the validity of the Evaluations of Emotions (EVE) scales and show that they are distinct from the ATE. As we predicted, ATE scores were more strongly associated with the perceived pleasantness of the target emotion, whereas EVE scores were more strongly associated with the perceived utility of the emotion (Studies 1–3). Furthermore, EVE (but not ATE) scores were linked to the perceived utility of anger, which in turn, was linked to the motivation to experience anger during an economic task (Study 4). We discuss possible implications of our findings for understanding meta-emotion and emotion regulation.