Nezlek, J. B., Vansteelandt, K., Van Mechelen, I., & Kuppens, P. (2008). Appraisal-emotion relationships in daily life. Emotion, 8, 145-150
Using a daily process design, the present study examined relationships between momentary appraisals and emotional experience based on Smith and Lazarus' theory of emotions (1993). Nine times a day for two weeks, participants (N = 33, 23 women) recorded their momentary experience of two positive emotions (joy, love) and four negative emotions (anger, guilt, fear, sadness) and the core relational theme appraisal contents Smith & Lazarus (1993) hypothesized as corresponding to these emotions. A series of multilevel modeling analyses found that the hypothesized relationships between appraisal contents and these emotions were stronger than relationships between contents and other emotions, although appraisals were related to other emotions in many cases. Moreover, there were some individual differences in the strength of these relationships. These results suggest that there are no one-to-one relationships between appraisal contents and specific emotional experiences, and that specific emotions are associated with different appraisal contents, and that specific appraisals are associated with different emotions.