Emotional Expressions as an Implicit Dimension of Categorization

AbstractIn this pre-registered study, we investigated whether facial expressions were implicitly encoded when forming impressions of others, and whether differences between people in their encoding of angry and happy facial expressions were related to depressive symptoms. These questions were addressed using the category confusion or Who Said What (WSW) paradigm. Results indicated that both angry and happy emotional expressions from human faces were encoded when forming impressions of others, with no difference in strength of encoding between both. We observed no evidence for associations between encoding of angry or happy facial expressions and depressive symptoms.

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