Searching for evidence, not a war: reply to Lindquist, Siegel, Quigley, and Barrett (2013). Academic Article uri icon


  • Lindquist, Siegel, Quigley, and Barrett (2013) critiqued our recent meta-analysis that reported the effects of discrete emotions on outcomes, including cognition, judgment, physiology, behavior, and experience (Lench, Flores, & Bench, 2011). Lindquist et al. offered 2 major criticisms-we address both and consider the nature of emotion and scientific debate. Their 1st criticism, that the meta-analysis did not demonstrate emotion-consistent and emotion-specific changes in outcomes, appears to have been based on a misunderstanding of the method that we employed. Changes in outcomes were coded according to predictions derived from a functional discrete emotion account. Their 2nd criticism, that the findings are consistent with a psychological constructionist approach to emotion, is partially supported by the data and our statements in Lench et al. (2011). However, only 1 meta-analytic finding is relevant to this hypothesis, and it does not offer unequivocal evidence. Further, we contend that no modern discrete emotion theories would make the claims described by Lindquist et al. as representing a "natural kind" perspective and that viewing a scientific debate as a war has negative implications for the ability to evaluate evidence.

published proceedings

  • Psychol Bull

author list (cited authors)

  • Lench, H. C., Bench, S. W., & Flores, S. A.

citation count

  • 15

complete list of authors

  • Lench, Heather C||Bench, Shane W||Flores, Sarah A

publication date

  • January 2013