Current emotion research in psychophysiology: The neurobiology of evaluative bivalence

Greg J. Norman, Catherine J. Norris, Jackie Gollan, Tiffany A. Ito, Louise C. Hawkley, Jeff T. Larsen, John T. Cacioppo, Gary G. Berntson*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

42 Scopus citations


Evaluative processes have their roots in early evolutionary history, as survival is dependent on an organism's ability to identify and respond appropriately to positive, rewarding or otherwise salubrious stimuli as well as to negative, noxious, or injurious stimuli. Consequently, evaluative processes are ubiquitous in the animal kingdom and are represented at multiple levels of the nervous system, including the lowest levels of the neuraxis. While evolution has sculpted higher level evaluative systems into complex and sophisticated information-processing networks, they do not come to replace, but rather to interact with more primitive lower level representations. Indeed, there are basic features of the underlying neuroarchitectural plan for evaluative processes that are common across levels of organization-including that of evaluative bivalence.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)349-359
Number of pages11
JournalEmotion Review
Issue number3
StatePublished - Jul 2011


  • amygdala
  • evaluative bivalence
  • insula
  • negativity
  • neuroevolution
  • positivity

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Social Psychology
  • Experimental and Cognitive Psychology
  • Arts and Humanities (miscellaneous)


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