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PSYC18H3 (275)
Chapter 4

Chapter 4.doc

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Gerald Cupchik

Chapter 4: Communication of Emotions - the communication of emotion is central to play, grieving, arguing, soothing, status negotiation, persuasion and socialization - nonverbal communication  single words like “smile, touch, gaze, laugh” not enough to describe the language o many contrasting emotional connotations - 5 categories of nonverbal behaviour: o Emblems: nonverbal gestures that directly translate to words  E.g. rubbing forefinger with the other one = “shame on you”  emblems vary in their meaning across cultures o Illustrator: a nonverbal gesture that accompanies our speech  slightly precede the corresponding word we say  E.g. nodding head when making important phrases, move torso to show empathy +facial gestures o Regulators: nonverbal behaviours that we use to coordinate conversation  E.g. looking and pointing to orient their bodies toward people they want to start speaking with + turn body away to stop speaking (regulators help regulate who talks in conversation) o Self-Adapter: nervous behaviours people engage in with no seeming intention (to release nervous energy)  E.g. touching necks, tug hair, jiggle legs, stroke their chins o Non-verbal expressions/displays of emotion: signals in the face, voice, body, and touch can convey emotion - Markers of Emotional Expressions o Emotional expressions are fairly brief (1-10 seconds)  Smile accompanying enjoyment = 1-10 secs  Polite smile with minimal emotion = ¼ of a sec – long period of time o Facial expressions of emotion = involuntary muscle actions (cannot be produced when they fee like it, cannot be suppressed)  different neuroanatomical basis  Anger = muscles tightening around mouth o emotional expressions have their parallels (homologues) in the display of other species (emotions derive from evolutionary heritage) - Universality of Facial Expressions: o Darwin: 3 principles to explain the appearance of emotional expressions  Principle of serviceable habits: expressive behaviours that have led to rewards will re-occur in the future  furrowing of eyebrow = protects eyes from attacks/aggression:. Furrow when angry  Principles of antithesis: opposing states will be associated with opposing expressions  strength/confidence expressed by expanding the chest and shoulders/ weakness expressed by opposite (shoulder shrug)  usually applies to embarrassment and pride  Principle of nervous charge: excess, undirected energy is released in random expressions  leg shakes, face touching, etc. o Encoding Hypothesis: if emotions are universal, the experience of different emotions should be associated with the same distinct facial expressions in every society worldwide o Decoding Hypothesis: if there are universal emotions, people of different cultures should interpret these expressions in the same way  Tested with facial expressions, voices expressions, and with touch o 6 different emotions: anger, disgust, fear, happiness, sadness, and surprise  Accuracy rate to depict emotion from photo = 80-90% for Fore people (:. PART OF HUMAN NATURE) o Emotional expression recognition occurs early in development - Critiques to Universality of Facial Expressions: o Gradient critique: some emotional expressions were less well recognized (fear, surprise and disgust) and some emotional expressions were recognized universally (happiness, anger, sadness)  **gradient of recognition (TRUE) o Forced choice: participants are FORCED to label the expressions using terms the researcher provided (Fore people may name them differently, or have a whole new word for it)  **participants from strikingly different cultures still recognized facial expressions with similar expressions 1  ** from experiment conducted between U.S. and India with universality and free response data o Ecological validity: perhaps expressions portrayed in studies (Ekman’s) are not the kind of expressions that people routinely judge in their daily lives (facial expressions highly exaggerated by actors)  Would everyday, more subtle expressions of emotion, be reliably judged?? - People recognize emotions through dynamic displays better (video clips) - Other expressions of universality have been discovered!!! o Contempt (sneer), Exhilaration (laughter with the contraction of muscles surrounding eyes) o Specific emotion correlates with a unique pattern of facial actions (encoding evidence) that can be understood by different cultures of people (decoding evidence) - Embarrassment = appeasement-related emotion (signals one’s lower status  e.g. after transgressions to show social reconciliation) o Characterized the nonverbal act of embarrassment by subjecting participants to embarrassing procedures  E.g. Singing emphatically then watching one’s own performance with others  E.g. Keltner: Having a stern experimenter tell you to make odd facial expressions (with a stationary head position to record frame by frame analysis) • embarrassed expression shown in the first 2-3 seconds after the participant released odd facial expression (affective display) o Loss of physical poise and composure in front of others  involuntary muscle actions  looking down, turn head away, brief smile, mouth movements (lip press, suck), furtive glances, touching face etc.  Static photos of embarrassment also CAN BE distinguished from shame o Human embarrassment displays resemble the appeasement displays of other species - Displays of Positive Emotion o Commitment-based analysis:  love expressed in a coherent pattern of smiling, mutual gaze, affiliative hand gestures, open posture, forward leans  desire signals in lip-related action (licks, wipes, and tongue protrusions) o Pride:  Signals opposite from weakness:. postural expansion + backward head tilt + slight smile o Sympathy/Compassion:  Oblique eyebrows and concerned gaze (expression associated with increased helping behaviour) DIFFERENT from distress - SOME say (Russell and his colleagues): limited universality in emotional expressions o BUT preliminary evidence indicates that there may be universality in expressions of love, desire, shame, pride, embarrassment, sympathy - Facial expressions and the coordination of social interaction o Expressions of emotion are more than just signals of internal states o Facial expressions coordinate social interactions through their: INFORMATIVE, EVOCATIVE, & INCENTIVE functions  Informative: emotional experience and expression are sources of information about the social world • emotional displays = sender’s emotions, intentions, relationship with target + environment external to the relationship
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