A Caltech Library Service

The ethological deconstruction of fear(s)

Mobbs, Dean (2018) The ethological deconstruction of fear(s). Current Opinion in Behavioral Sciences, 24 . pp. 32-37. ISSN 2352-1546. PMCID PMC6715320. doi:10.1016/j.cobeha.2018.02.008.

[img] PDF - Accepted Version
See Usage Policy.


Use this Persistent URL to link to this item:


The natural world presents a myriad of dangers that can threaten an organism's survival. This diversity of threats is matched by a set of universal and species specific defensive behaviors which are often subsumed under the emotions of fear and anxiety. A major issue in the field of affective science, however, is that these emotions are often conflated and scientists fail to reflect the ecological conditions that gave rise to them. I attempt to clarify these semantic issues by describing the link between ethologically defined defensive strategies and fear. This in turn, provides a clearer differentiation between fears, the contexts that evoke them and how they are organized within defensive survival circuits.

Item Type:Article
Related URLs:
URLURL TypeDescription CentralArticle
Mobbs, Dean0000-0003-1175-3772
Additional Information:© 2018 Published by Elsevier Ltd. Available online 20 March 2018. I wish to thank Ralph Adolphs and Joe LeDoux for their advice. This paper was supported by a grant from the NARSAD, National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH) grant 2P50MH094258, and Chen Institute Award (P2026052) grants to DM. Conflict of interest statement: Nothing declared.
Group:Tianqiao and Chrissy Chen Institute for Neuroscience
Funding AgencyGrant Number
Brain and Behavior Research FoundationUNSPECIFIED
Tianqiao and Chrissy Chen Institute for NeuroscienceP2026052
PubMed Central ID:PMC6715320
Record Number:CaltechAUTHORS:20180327-110701394
Persistent URL:
Official Citation:Dean Mobbs, The ethological deconstruction of fear(s), Current Opinion in Behavioral Sciences, Volume 24, 2018, Pages 32-37, ISSN 2352-1546,
Usage Policy:No commercial reproduction, distribution, display or performance rights in this work are provided.
ID Code:85455
Deposited By: Tony Diaz
Deposited On:27 Mar 2018 18:21
Last Modified:15 Mar 2022 21:54

Repository Staff Only: item control page