Psychology, Department of


Date of this Version

March 1996


Published in Motivation and Emotion, 20:3 (1996), pp. 255–272. Copyright © 1996 Plenum Publishing Corporation/Springer Netherlands. Used by permission.


Envy and jealousy may differ in kind or only by degree. In a study of emotion episodes recalled by 291 subjects, two forms of taxometric analysis were used to test between categorical and dimensional models of the two emotions. The two emotions yielded strong convergent evidence of discreteness, and commonly co-occurred. However, although subjects rated their episode to contain similar levels of “envy” and “jealousy,” both terms were equally correlated with the presence of envy features and neither term was correlated substantially with the presence of jealousy features. Implications are drawn for the study of categorical distinctions between emotions, and for the relation between emotions and emotion terms.