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May 2022

Reading a smiling face: Messages conveyed by various forms of smiling

Author(s): Abrosio, F. F. E., Hoshino, R. L.

Journal/Book: Percept Mot Skills. 1996; 82: PO Box 9229, Missoula, MT 59807. Perceptual Motor Skills. 1111-1121.

Abstract: This study investigated the effect of various forms of smiling (closed smile, upper smile, or broad smile) on person perception. Brazilian undergraduates (N=330) judged a photograph of a male or female stimulus person in three age ranges (young, middle-aged, and old) and smiling or not. 7-point scales were used to measure respondents' perception of the stimulus persons on various attributes (attractiveness, happiness, extroversion, sympathy,-kindness, submission, ambition, and intelligence). We found that a smile enhanced attractiveness and kindness ratings independently of its form, whereas the influence of the various forms on ratings of happiness was additive. As the neutral face changed to a closed smile and the closed smile became a broad smile, target stimuli were attributed greater rated happiness. We also found a contribution of perceivers' gender to the judgements of extroversion and sympathy, indicating a slightly greater discrimination of facial expressions among women than among men.

Note: Article E Otta, Univ Sao Paulo, Inst Psicol, Dept Psicol Expt, AV Prof Mello Moraes 1721, BR-05508900 Sao Paulo, Brazil

Keyword(s): FACIAL EXPRESSION; COMMUNICATION; PERCEPTION; GENDER; SEX


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