Affect arousal is the state of being activated, either physiologically or psychologically, and is one dimension of our affective response to emotional stimuli. Psychological characteristics of arousal include feelings of vigor, energy, and tension. Physiological symptoms of arousal include increased heart rate and blood pressure, among other changes.
Affect arousal describes the state of feeling awake, activated, and highly reactive to stimuli. There are both psychological and physiological components to the state of arousal. Psychologically, the state of arousal is associated with the subjective experience of feelings including high energy and tension. Physiologically, the body is in a state of relative heightened responsiveness, and is prepared for action through the activation of various neural (limbic) and bodily systems (e.g., the sympathetic nervous system). The state of arousal is usually prompted by external,...
This is a preview of subscription content, access via your institution.
Tax calculation will be finalised at checkout
Purchases are for personal use onlyLearn about institutional subscriptions
References and Readings
Cannon, W. B. (1932). The wisdom of the body. New York: WW Norton.
Russell, J. A. (1980). A circumplex model of affect. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 39, 1161–1178.
Storbeck, J., & Clore, G. L. (2008). Affective arousal as information: How affective arousal influences judgments, learning, and memory. Social and Personality Psychology Compass, 2, 1824–1843.
Strelau, J., & Eysenck, H. J. (1987). Personality dimensions and arousal. New York: Plenum Press.
Thayer, R. E. (1978). Toward a psychological theory of multidimensional activation (arousal). Motivation and Emotion, 2, 1–34.
Editors and Affiliations
© 2013 Springer Science+Business Media, New York
About this entry
Cite this entry
Niven, K., Miles, E. (2013). Affect Arousal. In: Gellman, M.D., Turner, J.R. (eds) Encyclopedia of Behavioral Medicine. Springer, New York, NY. https://doi.org/10.1007/978-1-4419-1005-9_1089
Publisher Name: Springer, New York, NY
Print ISBN: 978-1-4419-1004-2
Online ISBN: 978-1-4419-1005-9