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Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: http://hdl.handle.net/1807/33149

Title: Culture, gaze, and the neural processing of fear expressions
Authors: Adams, Reginald B. Jr.
Franklin, Robert G. Jr.
Rule, Nicholas O.
Freeman, Jonathan B.
Kveraga, Kestutis
Hadjikhani, Nouchine
Yoshikawa, Sakiko
Ambady, Nalini
Keywords: eye gaze
face perception
facial expression
cross-cultural psychology
Issue Date: 2010
Publisher: Oxford University Press
Citation: Adams, R. B., Jr., Franklin, R. G., Jr., Rule, N. O., Freeman, J. B., Kveraga, K., Hadjikhani, N., Yoshikawa, S. & Ambady, N. (2010). Culture, gaze, and the neural processing of fear expressions. Social, Cognitive, and Affective Neuroscience, 5, 340-348.
Abstract: The direction of others’ eye gaze has important influences on how we perceive their emotional expressions. Here, we examined differences in neural activation to direct- versus averted-gaze fear faces as a function of culture of the participant (Japanese versus US Caucasian), culture of the stimulus face (Japanese versus US Caucasian), and the relation between the two. We employed a previously validated paradigm to examine differences in neural activation in response to rapidly presented direct- versus averted-fear expressions, finding clear evidence for a culturally determined role of gaze in the processing of fear. Greater neural responsivity was apparent to averted- versus direct-gaze fear in several regions related to face and emotion processing, including bilateral amygdalae, when posed on same-culture faces, whereas greater response to direct- versus averted-gaze fear was apparent in these same regions when posed on other-culture faces. We also found preliminary evidence for intercultural variation including differential responses across participants to Japanese versus US Caucasian stimuli, and to a lesser degree differences in how Japanese and US Caucasian participants responded to these stimuli. These findings reveal a meaningful role of culture in the processing of eye gaze and emotion, and highlight their interactive influences in neural processing.
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/1807/33149
Appears in Collections:UofT Faculty publications

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