[en] The neural correlates of two hypothesized emotional processing modes, i.e., schematic and propositional modes, were investigated with positron emission tomography. Nineteen subjects performed an emotional mental imagery task while mentally repeating sentences linked to the meaning of the imagery script. In the schematic conditions, participants repeated metaphoric sentences, whereas in the propositional conditions, the sentences were explicit questions about specific emotional appraisals of the imagery scenario. Five types of emotional scripts were proposed to the subjects (happiness, anger, affection, sadness, and a neutral scenario). The results supported the hypothesized distinction between schematic and propositional emotional processing modes. Specifically, schematic mode was associated with increased activity in the ventromedial prefrontal cortex whereas propositional mode was associated with activation of the anterolateral prefrontal cortex. In addition, interaction analyses showed that schematic versus propositional processing of happiness (compared with the neutral scenario) was associated with increased activity in the ventral striatum whereas "schematic anger" was tentatively associated with activation of the ventral pallidum. (C) 2003 Elsevier Science (USA). All rights reserved.