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Do Valenced Odors and Trait Body Odor Disgust Affect Evaluation of Emotion in Dynamic Faces?
Stockholm University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Psychology, Perception and psychophysics.ORCID iD: 0000-0001-5999-2196
Stockholm University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Psychology, Personality, Social and Developmental Psychology. Magna Græcia University, Italy.
Stockholm University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Psychology, Biological psychology.
Stockholm University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Psychology, Perception and psychophysics. Swedish Collegium for Advanced Study, Sweden.
2017 (English)In: Perception, ISSN 0301-0066, E-ISSN 1468-4233, Vol. 46, no 12, p. 1412-1426Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Disgust is a core emotion evolved to detect and avoid the ingestion of poisonous food as well as the contact with pathogens and other harmful agents. Previous research has shown that multisensory presentation of olfactory and visual information may strengthen the processing of disgust-relevant information. However, it is not known whether these findings extend to dynamic facial stimuli that changes from neutral to emotionally expressive, or if individual differences in trait body odor disgust may influence the processing of disgust-related information. In this preregistered study, we tested whether a classification of dynamic facial expressions as happy or disgusted, and an emotional evaluation of these facial expressions, would be affected by individual differences in body odor disgust sensitivity, and by exposure to a sweat-like, negatively valenced odor (valeric acid), as compared with a soap-like, positively valenced odor (lilac essence) or a no-odor control. Using Bayesian hypothesis testing, we found evidence that odors do not affect recognition of emotion in dynamic faces even when body odor disgust sensitivity was used as moderator. However, an exploratory analysis suggested that an unpleasant odor context may cause faster RTs for faces, independent of their emotional expression. Our results further our understanding of the scope and limits of odor effects on facial perception affect and suggest further studies should focus on reproducibility, specifying experimental circumstances where odor effects on facial expressions may be present versus absent.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2017. Vol. 46, no 12, p. 1412-1426
Keywords [en]
disgust, olfaction, odors, facial expression, emotion, reaction time, evaluation
National Category
Psychology (excluding Applied Psychology)
Research subject
Psychology
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:su:diva-147328DOI: 10.1177/0301006617720831ISI: 000418611600005OAI: oai:DiVA.org:su-147328DiVA, id: diva2:1143814
Available from: 2017-09-22 Created: 2017-09-22 Last updated: 2018-01-08Bibliographically approved

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