Kansei brain

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Perspective of the KANSEI Brain Function Research
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Tsutomu OOHASHL * Emi NISHINA **, Yoshitaka FUWAMOTO Tadao MAEKAWA ***, and Norie KAWAI'"
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*ATR Human Information Processing Research Laboratories, 2-2, Hikaridai, Seika-cho, Soraku-gun, Kyoto 61 9-0288 JAPAN, oohashi@hip.atr.co.jp + Chiba Institute of Technology, 2-1 7-1, Tsudanuma, Narashino-shi, Chiba 275-0016 JAPAN ** NationalInstitute of Multimedia Education, 2-12, Wakaba, Mihama-ku, Chiba-shi, Chiba 26 1-0014 JAPAN, nishina@nime.ac.jp ++ Yokkaichi University, 1200, Kayou-cho, Yokkaichi-shi, Mie 5 12-8512 JAPAN *** ATR Media Integration & Communications Research Laboratories, 2-2, Hikaridai, Seika-cho, Soraku-gun, Kyoto 6 19-0288 JAPAN +++ Foundation for Advancement of International Science, 3-9- 1, Amakubo,Tsukuba-shi, Ibaraki 305-0005 JAPAN

ABSTRACT

In order to provide a mature definition of Kansei, we introduced a concept from the system control theory to arrange the function of the "brain as a system that controls the higher animal behavior". And based on our view of behavior control hierarchy resulting from a brain function, we would like to advance our definition from the one previously proposed byus as the working hypothesis. Kansei; a general term for the function of brain which isdue to the nervous systems, that project to the higher brain from the brainstem, and which contains a positive emotion such as beauty, amenity, interest, pleasure as an essential element. We also consider that "Kansei brain" consists of the brainstem, which is an organ centrally res;msible for the basic lifeactivity and pleasure, and medial forebrain bundle (MFB), which is a neural network that incorporates various regions of brain from the brainstem and controls their activity. We further consider that Kansei produced by such brain function is positioned in the higher hierarchy than reason in human behavior control. And Kansei is a control circuit that hnctions to orient the total brain activityorganically in order to ultimately actualize the instructions from the brainstem. Then we introduce the outline of an actual research example of Kansei brain function research, and discuss perspective resulting from this new research approach to Kansei.
1. INTRODUCTION

brain function in a field of research we named"Kanseibrain function research." Here we introduce a hndamental working hypothesis ofthe research and the outline ofactual research examples, and discuss perspective resulting from this new research approach. 2. WHAT IS A KANSEI BRAIN ? As above mentioned, the meaning ofthe concept of Kansei is somewhat confused, and almost none of these definitions is scientifically established to be able to adopt the basis of our research. However, a scientific definition is essential forKansei to be used as an effective conceptual apparatus in scientific fields. Consequently, we have first established the concept required to scientifically approach to Kansei and formed the following initial working hypothesis [ 11: Kansei, a general term for the function of mind (= brain) which contains a positive emotion such as beauty, amenity, interest, pleasure as an essential element; Kanseiinformation, information that induces a Kansei reaction; and; Kansei information processing, procedure to generate, synthesize, arrange, store and transmit Kansei information. In order to provide a mature definition, we subsequently considered that it is necessary to investigate where in the brain Kansei reaction occur; that is, we grappled with constructing a working hypothesis regarding thesubstance of a Kansei brain. This is because, although it is indisputable that Kansei reaction is a phenomenon which occurs in the brain, different parts of the brain are responsible for different brain functions, and understanding which site of the brain is responsible for Kansei reaction is of the utmost fundamental importance. Therefore, we considered that it would be more

The concept of Kansei...
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