Jaak Panksepp

And subheading could well be "Are people a special kind of animals..."

 “The ‘emotions’ are excellent examples of the fictional causes to which we commonly attribute behaviour,” said B.F. Skinner.

“Because subjective phenomena cannot be observed objectively in animals, it is idle to claim or deny their existence,” said Niko Tinbergen, who won the Nobel Prize for work on animal behaviour.

But Panksepp, WSU’s Baily Endowed Chair of Animal Well-Being Science, helped pioneer a new field of affective neuroscience. In the process he helped map out seven core emotional systems that lie deep in our brains. A stickler for language, he capitalized the systems, lest they be confused with their ordinary uses: SEEKING, RAGE, FEAR, LUST, CARE, SADNESS, and PLAY. For millions of years, these affects, (or feelings like doing something), have evolved to guide animals to find food, fight off enemies, avoid predators, reproduce, raise young, cling to caregivers, and engage with others.

I can highly recommend Panksepp's engaging book The Archaeology of Mind: Neuroevolutionary Origins of Human Emotions published in 2012. It builds on decades of thorough research of animal emotions, and challenges the dogmatic thought that animals cannot have emotions, essentially because they have too little neocortex.

If you like work of neuroscience pioneers like Antonio Damasio and Joseph LeDoux and think about the applicability of neuroscience research views to modern day psychiatry and psychotherapy, this will be a very interesting book to you.

Archeology of Mind