He throws like a girl (but only when he's sad): emotion affects sex-decoding of biological motion displays.

Kerri Johnson, Lawrie McKay, Frank Pollick

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

Gender stereotypes have been implicated in sex-typed perceptions of facial emotion. Such interpretations were recently called into question because facial cues of emotion are confounded with sexually dimorphic facial cues. Here we examine the role of visual cues and gender stereotypes in perceptions of biological motion displays, thus overcoming the morphological confounding inherent in facial displays. In four studies, participants’ judgments revealed gender stereotyping. Observers accurately perceived emotion from biological motion displays (Study 1), and this affected sex categorizations. Angry displays were overwhelmingly judged to be men; sad displays were judged to be women (Studies 2–4). Moreover, this pattern remained strong when stimuli were equated for velocity (Study 3). We argue that these results were obtained because perceivers applied gender stereotypes of emotion to infer sex category (Study 4). Implications for both vision sciences and social psychology are discussed.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)265-280
Number of pages16
JournalCognition
Volume119
Issue number2
Early online date23 Feb 2011
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 May 2011
Externally publishedYes

Fingerprint

Emotions
emotion
Cues
stereotype
gender
Motion Perception
Social Psychology
Stereotyping
women's studies
social psychology
stimulus
interpretation
Emotion
Biological Motion
Decoding
science
Gender Stereotypes

Keywords

  • Point-light display
  • Biological motion
  • Gender stereotypes
  • Sex perception
  • Emotion perception

Cite this

@article{453f9fd04ca74d7dba234ce51493c0a6,
title = "He throws like a girl (but only when he's sad): emotion affects sex-decoding of biological motion displays.",
abstract = "Gender stereotypes have been implicated in sex-typed perceptions of facial emotion. Such interpretations were recently called into question because facial cues of emotion are confounded with sexually dimorphic facial cues. Here we examine the role of visual cues and gender stereotypes in perceptions of biological motion displays, thus overcoming the morphological confounding inherent in facial displays. In four studies, participants’ judgments revealed gender stereotyping. Observers accurately perceived emotion from biological motion displays (Study 1), and this affected sex categorizations. Angry displays were overwhelmingly judged to be men; sad displays were judged to be women (Studies 2–4). Moreover, this pattern remained strong when stimuli were equated for velocity (Study 3). We argue that these results were obtained because perceivers applied gender stereotypes of emotion to infer sex category (Study 4). Implications for both vision sciences and social psychology are discussed.",
keywords = "Point-light display, Biological motion, Gender stereotypes, Sex perception, Emotion perception",
author = "Kerri Johnson and Lawrie McKay and Frank Pollick",
year = "2011",
month = "5",
day = "1",
doi = "10.1016/j.cognition.2011.01.016",
language = "English",
volume = "119",
pages = "265--280",
journal = "Cognition",
issn = "0010-0277",
publisher = "Elsevier B.V.",
number = "2",

}

He throws like a girl (but only when he's sad) : emotion affects sex-decoding of biological motion displays. / Johnson, Kerri; McKay, Lawrie; Pollick, Frank.

In: Cognition, Vol. 119, No. 2, 01.05.2011, p. 265-280.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

TY - JOUR

T1 - He throws like a girl (but only when he's sad)

T2 - emotion affects sex-decoding of biological motion displays.

AU - Johnson, Kerri

AU - McKay, Lawrie

AU - Pollick, Frank

PY - 2011/5/1

Y1 - 2011/5/1

N2 - Gender stereotypes have been implicated in sex-typed perceptions of facial emotion. Such interpretations were recently called into question because facial cues of emotion are confounded with sexually dimorphic facial cues. Here we examine the role of visual cues and gender stereotypes in perceptions of biological motion displays, thus overcoming the morphological confounding inherent in facial displays. In four studies, participants’ judgments revealed gender stereotyping. Observers accurately perceived emotion from biological motion displays (Study 1), and this affected sex categorizations. Angry displays were overwhelmingly judged to be men; sad displays were judged to be women (Studies 2–4). Moreover, this pattern remained strong when stimuli were equated for velocity (Study 3). We argue that these results were obtained because perceivers applied gender stereotypes of emotion to infer sex category (Study 4). Implications for both vision sciences and social psychology are discussed.

AB - Gender stereotypes have been implicated in sex-typed perceptions of facial emotion. Such interpretations were recently called into question because facial cues of emotion are confounded with sexually dimorphic facial cues. Here we examine the role of visual cues and gender stereotypes in perceptions of biological motion displays, thus overcoming the morphological confounding inherent in facial displays. In four studies, participants’ judgments revealed gender stereotyping. Observers accurately perceived emotion from biological motion displays (Study 1), and this affected sex categorizations. Angry displays were overwhelmingly judged to be men; sad displays were judged to be women (Studies 2–4). Moreover, this pattern remained strong when stimuli were equated for velocity (Study 3). We argue that these results were obtained because perceivers applied gender stereotypes of emotion to infer sex category (Study 4). Implications for both vision sciences and social psychology are discussed.

KW - Point-light display

KW - Biological motion

KW - Gender stereotypes

KW - Sex perception

KW - Emotion perception

U2 - 10.1016/j.cognition.2011.01.016

DO - 10.1016/j.cognition.2011.01.016

M3 - Article

VL - 119

SP - 265

EP - 280

JO - Cognition

JF - Cognition

SN - 0010-0277

IS - 2

ER -