How culture creates emotions — and how technology decodes them

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“People in all cultures can become depressed but the recurrence of depression is much higher in individualist countries like the United States and Western Europe, than in cultures where people take care of each other,” says cultural psychologist Batja Gomes de Mesquita. Photo by Shutterstock.

Jonathan Bastian talks with cultural psychologist Batja Gomes de Mesquita, author of “Between Us: How Culture Creates Emotions” who makes the case that emotions are not innate but are rather shaped but our surroundings and cultures, made as we live our lives together. Later, Rosalind Picard, founder and director of the Affective Computing research group at the MIT Media Lab, explains how advances in AI can help computers analyze our emotions with the ultimate goal of making human lives better.

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Andrea Brody