Influence of violent contexts on facial reactions elicited by angry and neutral faces
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This study focuses on determining whether violent contexts influence the perception of aggressiveness in faces analysing spontaneous corrugator supercilii activity. Participants viewed pictures of neutral and angry faces preceded by a contextual sentence describing either violent or neutral actions. They were instructed to judge each face according to whether it was aggressive or non-aggressive. Results show a higher level of perceived aggressiveness for neutral faces preceded by violent contexts, accompanied by longer reaction times, and a significant increase of corrugator activity. Angry faces preceded by neutral contexts were judged as less aggressive and elicited less corrugator activity. In conclusion, our results provide evidence that facial reactions and aggressiveness judgment for faces are context-dependent. With this work, we contribute to the view that contextual cues guide the face’s emotional meaning, under top-down processing. © 2020, © 2020 Informa UK Limited, trading as Taylor & Francis Group.
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