Chapter 6

The Central Role of Emotions in Consumer Responses

In This Chapter

arrow Seeing why nonconscious emotions are central to consumer responses

arrow Understanding how nonconscious emotions differ from conscious feelings

arrow Appreciating the subtle ways emotions impact our bodies, and vice versa

arrow Explaining how emotions influence attention and memory

In 1994, Antonio Damasio, a physician and neuroscientist at the University of Iowa, published a book that changed the way brain scientists thought about rationality and emotion. In Descartes’ Error: Emotion, Reason, and the Human Brain (Penguin), Damasio showed that emotions, far from being the enemy of rationality, were essential to good decision making. Patients with damage to emotional centers in their brains were not cool and calm deciders like the hyper-rational Mr. Spock (see Chapter 2). Instead, they were barely able to make decisions at all! Damasio made the profound connection that emotions are not just compatible with good decisions; they’re indispensible contributors.

In this chapter, we explore the new view of emotions that has emerged ...

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