Image from page 107 of "The origin and nature of the emotions; miscellaneous papers" (1915)
Publisher: Philadelphia, Saunders
Contributing Library: Cornell University Library
Digitizing Sponsor: MSN
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s, if one were provoked to suchanger that he felt impelled to attack the object of his anger,one of three things might happen: First, he might performno physical act but give expression to the emotion of anger;second, he might engage in a physical struggle and completelysatisfy his anger; third, he might immediately engage inviolent gymnastic exercises and thus consume all the motor-producing elements mobilized by the anger and thus clarifyhis body. In these premises we find our explanation of the originand purpose of laughter and crying, for since thej consistalmost wholly of muscular exertion, thej^ serve precisely suchclarifying purposes as would be served by the gj^mnasticexercises of an angry man. As it seems to me, the muscularaction of laughter clears the system of the energizing sub-stances which have been mobilized in various parts of thebody for the performance of other actions (Figs. 27 to 29).If this be true, the first cjuestion that presents itself is, Why 94 THE EMOTIONS
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Fig. 27.—The fades of tlii.s freckle-faced boy i.s an excellent illustrationof the expre.ssion in laughter of effervescent and infinitely varied possil^ilitiesof motor activity.
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