Discovering Emotions through the Building of a Linguistic Resource

Manuela Angioni, Franco Tuveri

Abstract

Specific linguistic resources, syntactically annotated and distinctive for each language, related to the affective sphere are important in discovering terms or phrases associated with emotions in order to detect expressed emotions. The paper proposes the initial version of a linguistic resource for the Italian language, mapped on WordNet, where each concept, whose meaning falls into the sphere of emotions, is enriched by a category, allowing to better specify the type of emotion expressed by the term, and by a polarity value, whether the emotion is positive or negative. The resource is based on the model of emotions proposed by Robert Plutchik and has been developed, within a national project of Work-School Alternation, in collaboration with some high school students. The work has a twofold value. On one hand, the development of a linguistic resource, on the other the educational and didactic aspect of students’ involvement. Working on the analysis of literary texts with the task of elaborating and defining the emotions described, the students, assisted by their teachers and two researchers, had to face with their feelings and talk more freely about their affective states, recognizing the emotions and giving them a name.

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