The influence of gender and social role on the interpretation of facial expressions

E. Ashby Plant, Kristen C. Kling, Ginny L. Smith

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

41 Scopus citations

Abstract

The current studies were designed to examine the influence of apparent gender on the interpretation of ambiguous emotional expressions. Participants rated the intensity of emotions that were expressed in two versions of the same emotional expression, in which hair style and clothing were altered to manipulate gender. The emotional expression in each of the photos was a combination of anger and sadness. Of interest was the effect of the apparent gender of the poser on the interpretation of the blended emotional expression. In Study 2 we also examined whether the social role (i.e., occupation) of the poser influenced the interpretation. Although the occupation of the poser did not influence emotion ratings, the apparent gender of the poser influenced the interpretation of ambiguous emotional expressions in a stereotype-consistent manner in both Studies 1 and 2.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)187-196
Number of pages10
JournalSex Roles
Volume51
Issue number3-4
DOIs
StatePublished - Aug 1 2004

Keywords

  • emotion
  • facial expression
  • gender
  • nonverbal display

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