I Can See It All Over Your Face

Report
I Can See It All Over Your
Face
Background
 Paul Ekman– Leading researcher in facial expression
and emotion
 Ekman/Friesen conducted similar studies
before
 College students exposed to other cultures
 Do facial expressions correspond universally to basic
emotions?
Experiment
 Ekman/Friesen traveled to the Southeast
of New Guinea to find subjects
people (Stone Age society)
Highlands
among the Fore
 189 adults, 130 children out of 11,000
 Never seen a movie, lived elsewhere, spoke English, been
outside the country, or experienced western culture
 Ekman/Friesen wrote stories and the subjects were asked to
identify which story corresponded with which face (western
faces of men, women, children all used)
Results
 No differences between men and women, or adults and
children, in identifying emotion
 The distinguishing between fear and surprise was the
most missed connection
 The general results:
Adult average correct: 75.8 %
Children average correct: 89.6%
Discussion
 With cultural differences, facial expressions of emotions
are universal.
 Facial expressions for emotion appear to be innate,
rather than learned (and not culture specific)
 Through evolution, humans developed the ability to
identify potentially threatening emotions (anger) more
easily
Recent Applications
 Recent studies found that children with autism appear
to have difficulty recognizing facial expressions
 Ekman’s studies played a fundamental role in crosscultural psychology research
 Eyebrows are the most important
feature when determining emotion
facial
Conclusion
 Facial Feedback Theory: The expression on your face
feeds information to your brain to help you interpret the
emotion you are feeling
 Facial expressions may indicate lying
I Can See It All Over Your
Face

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