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Pervasive influence of idiosyncratic associative biases during facial emotion recognition

Abstract : Facial morphology has been shown to influence perceptual judgments of emotion in a way that is shared across human observers. Here we demonstrate that these shared associations between facial morphology and emotion coexist with strong variations unique to each human observer. Interestingly, a large part of these idiosyncratic associations does not vary on short time scales, emerging from stable inter-individual differences in the way facial morphological features influence emotion recognition. Computational modelling of decision-making and neural recordings of electrical brain activity revealed that both shared and idiosyncratic face-emotion associations operate through a common biasing mechanism rather than an increased sensitivity to face-associated emotions. Together, these findings emphasize the underestimated influence of idiosyncrasies on core social judgments and identify their neuro-computational signatures.
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Marwa El Zein, Valentin Wyart, Julie Grèzes. Pervasive influence of idiosyncratic associative biases during facial emotion recognition. Scientific Reports, Nature Publishing Group, 2018, 8 (1), pp.8804. ⟨10.1038/s41598-018-27102-z⟩. ⟨inserm-02461675⟩

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