For a long time, we have always believed that Humans experience 6 basic emotions – happiness, sadness, anger, surprise, fear, and disgust.
Most of the human psychology studies have revolved around these six emotions.
But a study by Alan S. Cowen and Dacher Keltner from the University of California, Berkeley has revealed that human emotions can be categorized in a spectrum of 27 emotions.
As published in the Proceedings of National Academy of Sciences, humans exhibit these 27 distinct categories of emotion bridged by continuous gradients (sorted alphabetically)
- Aesthetic Appreciation
- Empathetic pain
- Sexual desire
There are some “emotions” you might find missing from this list, like Anger and Happiness. According to the study, these feelings originate from other emotions such as fear or envy, for example. And thus these basic 27 emotions can be used to uniquely identify what a person is experiencing at any moment.