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Gepubliceerd in: Psychological Research 6/2017

26-10-2016 | Original Article

The effect of facial expressions on peripersonal and interpersonal spaces

Auteurs: Gennaro Ruggiero, Francesca Frassinetti, Yann Coello, Mariachiara Rapuano, Armando Schiano di Cola, Tina Iachini

Gepubliceerd in: Psychological Research | Uitgave 6/2017

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Abstract

Identifying individuals’ intent through the emotional valence conveyed by their facial expression influences our capacity to approach-avoid these individuals during social interactions. Here, we explore if and how the emotional valence of others’ facial expressiveness modulates peripersonal-action and interpersonal-social spaces. Through Immersive Virtual Reality, participants determined reachability-distance (for peripersonal space) and comfort-distance (for interpersonal space) from male/female virtual confederates exhibiting happy, angry and neutral facial expressions while being approached by (passive-approach) or walking toward (active-approach) them. Results showed an increase of distance when seeing angry rather than happy confederates in both approach conditions of comfort-distance. The effect also appeared in reachability-distance, but only in the passive-approach. Anger prompts avoidant behaviors, and thus an expansion of distance, particularly with a potential violation of near body space by an intruder. Overall, the findings suggest that peripersonal-action space, in comparison with interpersonal-social space, is similarly sensitive to the emotional valence of stimuli. We propose that this similarity could reflect a common adaptive mechanism shared by these spaces, presumably at different degrees, for ensuring self-protection functions.
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Metagegevens
Titel
The effect of facial expressions on peripersonal and interpersonal spaces
Auteurs
Gennaro Ruggiero
Francesca Frassinetti
Yann Coello
Mariachiara Rapuano
Armando Schiano di Cola
Tina Iachini
Publicatiedatum
26-10-2016
Uitgeverij
Springer Berlin Heidelberg
Gepubliceerd in
Psychological Research / Uitgave 6/2017
Print ISSN: 0340-0727
Elektronisch ISSN: 1430-2772
DOI
https://doi.org/10.1007/s00426-016-0806-x