Individuals with high levels of alexithymia, a personality trait marked by difficulties in identifying and describing feelings and an externally oriented style of thinking, appear to require more time to accurately recognize intense emotional facial expressions (EFEs). However, in everyday life, EFEs are displayed at different levels of intensity and individuals with high alexithymia may also need more emotional intensity to identify EFEs. Nevertheless, the impact of alexithymia on the identification of EFEs, which vary in emotional intensity, has largely been neglected. To address this, two experiments were conducted in which participants with low (LA) and high (HA) levels of alexithymia were assessed in their ability to identify static (Experiment 1) and dynamic (Experiment 2) morphed faces ranging from neutral to intense EFEs. Results showed that HA needed more emotional intensity than LA to identify static fearful - but not happy or disgusted - faces. On the contrary, no evidence was found that alexithymia affected the identification of dynamic EFEs. These results extend current literature suggesting that alexithymia is related to the need for more perceptual information to identify static fearful EFEs.

Alexithymia is related to the need for more emotional intensity to identify static fearful facial expressions

Scarpazza C.
2018

Abstract

Individuals with high levels of alexithymia, a personality trait marked by difficulties in identifying and describing feelings and an externally oriented style of thinking, appear to require more time to accurately recognize intense emotional facial expressions (EFEs). However, in everyday life, EFEs are displayed at different levels of intensity and individuals with high alexithymia may also need more emotional intensity to identify EFEs. Nevertheless, the impact of alexithymia on the identification of EFEs, which vary in emotional intensity, has largely been neglected. To address this, two experiments were conducted in which participants with low (LA) and high (HA) levels of alexithymia were assessed in their ability to identify static (Experiment 1) and dynamic (Experiment 2) morphed faces ranging from neutral to intense EFEs. Results showed that HA needed more emotional intensity than LA to identify static fearful - but not happy or disgusted - faces. On the contrary, no evidence was found that alexithymia affected the identification of dynamic EFEs. These results extend current literature suggesting that alexithymia is related to the need for more perceptual information to identify static fearful EFEs.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11577/3345314
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