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Chapter 4

Chapter 4 Social Perception


Department
Psychology
Course Code
PSYB10H3
Professor
Elizabeth Page- Gould
Chapter
4

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Chapter Four: Social Perception
Culture & Nonverbal Communication
Paul Ekman concluded that display rules are particular to each culture & dictate what kind of
emotional expression people are supposed to show
In collectivist cultures, the expression of strong negative emotions is discouraged b/c to do so
can disrupt group harmony
Eye contact & eye gaze are particularly powerful nonverbal cues
The most important pt of emblems is that they are not universal; each culture has devised its
own emblems
Gender & Nonverbal Communication
Many studies that women are better at both decoding & encoding
Men are better at detecting lies
While women have the ability to decode nonverbal cues of lying, they tend to turn off this skill
in the face of deception, in polite deference to the speaker
Member of the society expect men & women to have certain attributes that are consistent with
their role. Consequently, women are expected to be more nurturing, friendly, expressive, & sensitive
than men b/c of their primary role as caregivers to children & elderly family members
Men & women develop different sets of skills & attitudes, based on their experiences in their
gender roles
b/c women are less powerful in societies & less likely to occupy roles of higher status, it is
more important for women to learn to be accommodating & polite than it is for men
the tendency of women to be nonverbally polite in this manner was especially strong in those
cultures where women are most oppressed
Implicit Personality Theories: Filling in the Blanks
this efficiency can come at some cost & in some cases could even be fatal
Culture & Implicit Personality Theories
implicit personality theories are strongly tied to culture
different cultures have different ideas about personality types
Hoffman hypothesized that these culturally specific implicit personality theories would
influence the way people form impressions of others
The language people speak influences the way they think about the world
We make guesses about their personalities, such as how friendly or outgoing they are, often
based on their nonverbal behaviour
To answer this why question, we use our immediate observations to form more elegant &
complex inferences about what people really are like & what motivates them to act as they do
The Nature of the Attributional Process
Naïve or common sense psychology; in Heider’s view, people are like amateur scientists,
trying to understand other people’s behaviour by cause
Another of Heider’s important contributions was his observation that people generally prefer
internal attributions over external ones
The Covariation Model: Internal vs External Attributions
Kelley’s major contribution to attribution theory was the idea that we notice & think about
more than one piece of information when we form an impression of another person
Kelley assumed that when we are in the process of forming an attribution, we gather
information, or data, that will help us reach a judgment
Kelley identified three key types of information: consensus, distinctiveness, & consistency
People are most likely to make an internal attribution- deciding the behaviour was a result of
something about the boss- when the consensus & distinctiveness of the act are low, but the
consistency is high
People are likely to make an external attribution if consensus, distinctiveness, & consistency
are all high
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