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"Stumbling on Happiness" - p.68

This dissociation between awareness and experience can cause the same sort of spookiness with regard to our emotions. Some people seem to be keenly aware of their moods and feelings, and may even have a novelist's gift for describing their every shade and flavor. Others of us come equipped with a somewaht more basic emotional vocabulary that, much to the chagrin of our romantic partners, consists primarily of good, not so good, and I already told you. If our expressive deficit is so profound and protracted that it even occurs outside of football season, we may be diagnosed with alexithymia, which literally means "absence of words to describe emotional states." When alexithymics are asked what they are feeling, they usually say, "Nothing," and when they are asked how they are feeling, they usually say, "I don't know." 


definition of "alexithymia" - (http://www.wisegeek.com/what-is-alexithymia.htm)
The word alexithymia literally means “no words for emotion”, from the Greek a for "lack", lexis for "word" and thymia for "emotion". Alexithymia is a maladaptive psychological disorder characterized by the inability to identify and verbally describe emotions and feelings in oneself as well as in others.

alexithyia 意指「情感失認症」,症狀是缺乏或沒有情感認知力以及情感語言化能力,無法將情感表現在語言中。通常患者有以下特徵:無法以言語來表達情緒、缺乏想像的思考空間、無法意識到自己的情緒衝突、缺乏經驗正向情緒的能力、無法區分負向情感。


"Stumbling on Happiness" - p. 69

Some evidence suggests that alexithymia is caused by a dysfunction of the anterior cingulate cortex, which is a part of the brain known to mediate our awareness of many things, including our inner states. Just as the decoupling of awareness and visual experience can give rise to blindsight, so the decoupling of awareness and emotional experience can give rise to what we might call numbfeel. Apparently, it is possible - at least for some of the people some of the time - to be happy, sad, bored, or curious, and not know it. 

情感失認證(alexithymia)可能是因為前扣帶皮質層(anterior cingulate cortex)功能失效所造成的情感表達障礙,前扣帶皮質層是額葉皮質的一部分,負責認知判定以及衝突反應,也負責痛覺的反應。



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