Andersonian realism is a determinist, empiricist position that acknowledges the important distinction between qualities and relations. However, Anderson's ‘mind as feeling’ thesis, proposing that the mind's qualities are emotional, is problematic since it fails to account for ‘feelings’ themselves. O'Neil's (1934) alternative relational account of affects, in conjunction with Maze's (1983) theory of instinctual drives, provides a coherent platform for developing a comprehensive realist account of affects. In discussing the relation between affects, cognition and motivation, affects are viewed as drive-evaluative phenomena, and ‘feelings’ are known bodily states arising in conjunction with motivationally driven environmental evaluations. The role that affects play in a revised desire/belief model of behaviour explanation is discussed.