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Tag: Emotion

Emotional enhancement of error detection—The role of perceptual processing and inhibition monitoring in failed auditory stop trials

Published in: Cognitive, Affective, & Behavioral Neuroscience, Volume 18, Issue 1, 1-20 Abstract “The first aim of the present study was to test whether arousing, aversive sounds can influence inhibitory task performance and lead to increased error monitoring relative to a neutral task condition. The second aim was to examine whether the enhancement of error monitoring in an affective context (if present) could be predicted from stop-signal-related brain activity. Participants performed an emotional stop-signal task that required response inhibition to aversive and neutral auditory stimuli. The behavioral data revealed that unpleasant sounds facilitated inhibitory processing by decreasing the stop-signal reaction time… Read More

Languages flex cultural thinking

Published in: Bilingualism: Language and Cognition, Volume 21, Issue 2, 219-227 Abstract “Recent studies have revealed remarkable interactions between language and emotion. Here, we show that such interactions influence judgments made regarding cultural information. Balanced Welsh–English bilinguals categorized statements about their native Welsh culture as true or false. Whilst participants categorized positive statements as true when they were true, they were biased towards categorizing them as true also when they were false, irrespective of the language in which they read them. Surprisingly, participants were unbiased when categorizing negative statements presented in their native language Welsh, but showed a reverse bias… Read More

“So Happy I Could Shout!” and “So Happy I Could Cry!” Dimorphous expressions represent and communicate motivational aspects of positive emotions

Published in: Cognition and Emotion, Volume 32, Issue 2, 286-302 Abstract “Happiness can be expressed through smiles. Happiness can also be expressed through physical displays that without context, would appear to be sadness (tears, downward turned mouths, and crumpled body postures) and anger (clenched jaws, snarled lips, furrowed brows, and pumped fists). These seemingly incongruent displays of happiness, termed dimorphous expressions, we propose, represent and communicate expressers’ motivational orientations. When participants reported their own aggressive expressions in positive or negative contexts, their expressions represented positive or negative emotional experiences respectively, imbued with appetitive orientations (feelings of wanting to go). In contrast, reported sad expressions, in… Read More

Finding the good in the bad: age and event experience relate to the focus on positive aspects of a negative event

Published in: Cognition and Emotion, Volume 32, Issue 2, 414-421 Abstract “All lives contain negative events, but how we think about these events differs across individuals; negative events often include positive details that can be remembered alongside the negative, and the ability to maintain both representations may be beneficial. In a survey examining emotional responses to the 2013 Boston Marathon bombings, the current study investigated how this ability shifts as a function of age and individual differences in initial experience of the event. Specifically, this study examined how emotional importance (i.e. self-reported emotional arousal and personal significance), involvement (i.e. self and… Read More

Attentional bias during emotional processing: evidence from an emotional flanker task using IAPS

Published in: Cognition and Emotion, Volume 32, Issue 2, 275-285 Abstract “Attention is biased towards threat-related stimuli. In three experiments, we investigated the mechanisms, processes, and time course of this processing bias. An emotional flanker task simultaneously presented affective or neutral pictures from the international affective picture system database either as central response-relevant stimuli or surrounding response-uninformative flankers. Participants’ response times to central stimuli was measured. The attentional bias was observed when stimuli were presented either for 1500 ms (Experiment 1) or 500 ms (Experiment 2). The threat-related attentional bias held regardless of the stimuli competing for attention even when presentation time was… Read More

The dot-probe task to measure emotional attention: A suitable measure in comparative studies?

Published in: Psychonomic Bulletin & Review, Volume 24, Issue 6, December 2017, 1686-1717 Abstract “For social animals, attending to and recognizing the emotional expressions of other individuals is of crucial importance for their survival and likely has a deep evolutionary origin. Gaining insight into how emotional expressions evolved as adaptations over the course of evolution can be achieved by making direct cross-species comparisons. To that extent, experimental paradigms that are suitable for investigating emotional processing across species need to be developed and evaluated. The emotional dot-probe task, which measures attention allocation toward emotional stimuli, has this potential. The task is implicit,… Read More

Differences in holistic processing do not explain cultural differences in the recognition of facial expression

Published in: The Quarterly Journal of Experimental Psychology, Volume 70, Issue 12, 2445-2459 Abstract “The aim of this study was to investigate the causes of the own-race advantage in facial expression perception. In Experiment 1, we investigated Western Caucasian and Chinese participants’ perception and categorization of facial expressions of six basic emotions that included two pairs of confusable expressions (fear and surprise; anger and disgust). People were slightly better at identifying facial expressions posed by own-race members (mainly in anger and disgust). In Experiment 2, we asked whether the own-race advantage was due to differences in the holistic processing of facial… Read More