December 3, 2016
Written by Maximus Peperkamp, M.S. Verbal Engineer
This is my twenty-seventh response to “The basic emotional circuits of mammalian brains: Do animals have affective lives?” by J. Panksepp (2011). Again, my dear reader, please don’t be offended that I copy large pieces of Panksepp’s paper as it is relevant to behaviorism as well as to the distinction between Sound Verbal Behavior (SVB) and Noxious Verbal Behavior (NVB). Why don’t behaviorist talk about him?
“Before causal neuroscience studies of the early 1950s (e.g., self-stimulation and escape from aversive Electrical Brain Stimulation (ESB) investigators had no real basis for evaluating whether animals experienced their emotional arousals—whether they felt their emotions—but learning mediated by ESB induced reward and punishments solved that problem a long time ago; we just chose not to modify well-established ways of speaking (behavior-only lingo) and related neuroscientific ways of thinking (ruthless reductionism).” (italics added). Here he literally identifies our way of speaking!!!
Although Panksepp advocates for a different way of talking, he only refers to the lingo, to the content as he too doesn’t realize that the SVB/NVB distinction is needed to change the way in which we speak.
“During the current era, only the most affect-sensitive kinds of human brain imaging, mainly PET scans, can visualize the ghostly tracks of primal affective experiences in the deepest areas of the human brain. But it is now noteworthy that these regions have long been implicated in engendering emotionality in animals. And ESB studies in humans have been quite consistent in generating intense affective experiences during stimulation of such brain regions. Never have such profound
emotional states been provoked by stimulating neocortical regions.
Although some emotional responses have been recently evoked by
cortical micro-stimulation, the rewarding and punishing properties of such brain sites remain to be evaluated.” In SVB we acknowledge and accurately express affective experiences, in NVB this is impossible.