Liane Ströbel

Emotion Concepts in Use – An interdisciplinary workshop at Heinrich-Heine-University Dusseldorf (June 25-26, 2015)

Call for Papers

This workshop aims at analyzing emotion concepts from an interdisciplinary perspective (linguistics, philosophy, psychology). On the one hand, the workshop is interested in the cognitive mechanisms underlying the experience of emotions and emotion concepts, and, on the other hand, it is interested in the (frame-theoretical) modeling and prediction of the ways in which emotion expressions are used.

A core feature of human mental life is not only the experience of emotion but also the application of emotion concepts to the outer world. We do not only know what it is like to be surprised, but we also describe a situation or an event as surprising or even call something a surprise. On the contrary, we might consider a situation to be sad, but we would not label it by the word ’sadness‘ (in English, at least).

Moreover, it is not only the case that we apply emotion concepts such as SAD and JOYFUL to inanimate subjects as music, art and literature (e.g., this song is so sad, this melody is so joyful, this story has a happy ending), but we also use emotion concepts to intensify our emotions when we speak, for example, about panic-stricken fear.

Our invited speakers are:

  • Margaret Freeman (Myrifield Institute for Cognition and the Arts)
  • Michelle Montague (The University of Texas at Austin, Philosophy)
  • Zoltan Kovecses (Eötvöses Lorand University, American Studies)
  • John Lambie (Angelia Ruskin University, Psychology)
  • Sebastian Löbner (Heinrich-Heine-University Dusseldorf, CRC 991)
  • Liane Ströbel (Heinrich-Heine-University Dusseldorf, CRC 991, RWTH Aachen)

In addition, we invite abstracts of no more than 250 words to be submitted to for blind refereeing until May 2.

Successful applicants will be informed by May 15.

Abstracts should deal with the following (or related) topics:

  • the evaluative phenomenology of emotions
  • the acquisition/development of emotion concepts
  • the constitution of emotion concepts
  • commonalities and differences between evaluative adjectives and emotion adjectives (e.g., bad vs. sad)
  • commonalities and differences between evaluative adverbs and emotion adverbs (e.g., badly vs. sadly)
  • the use of emotion/evaluative adverbs (e.g., surprisingly, terribly) in various linguistic categories, e.g., as intensifiers, as positives, as discourse markers, etc.
  • the use of emotion/evaluative adjectives in various linguistic categories
  • emotion concepts and aesthetic judgments
  • metaphorical aspects of emotion concepts (e.g., broken heart for unfulfilled love)

Heinrich-Heine-University Dusseldorf, CRC 991: The Structure of Representations in Language, Cognition and Science, sponsored by the German Research Foundation (DFG)

Please note: Due to internal infrastructural complications and five fairs to be held in Dusseldorf in the week of June 18 and 19, we had to reschedule our workshop. The new dates for the workshop are June 25 and 26.

Susanna Melkonian (
Liane Stroebel (

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