Emotional responses to auditory stimuli

Jorge L. Armony, Joseph E. LeDoux

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter


This article describes what is currently known about the neural structures and mechanisms associated with the processing of emotional auditory information for stimuli with intrinsic or learned affective value. It focuses on the amygdala, as this structure has been consistently shown to be a crucial component of the emotional brain, across several sensory modalities, in particular, within the auditory domain. The amygdala may be part of a supramodal emotional brain network that remains fairly conserved throughout evolution. Although most of our knowledge on the neurobiology of auditory emotional processing, in particular fear conditioning, comes from studies conducted in experimental animals, especially rodents, recent studies have confirmed that analogous brain regions and mechanisms are responsible for the processing of emotional information in humans. Future studies should help further identify the similarities and differences in the neural processing of emotional information across modalities and species.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationThe Oxford Handbook of Auditory Science The Auditory Brain
PublisherOxford University Press
ISBN (Electronic)9780191743481
ISBN (Print)9780199233281
StatePublished - Sep 18 2012


  • Amygdala
  • Auditory information
  • Emotional processing
  • Fear conditioning
  • Neurobiology

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Psychology


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