The Vividness of the Happy Face

David Becker, Narayanan Srinivasan

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

    24 Citations (Scopus)

    Abstract

    An emerging literature reveals that happy faces are vivid: They automatically and rapidly engage cognitive processing at many different levels. They do this in part because their form has evolved to take advantage of preexisting efficiencies in visual perception. In addition to "happy advantages" at the earliest stages of perception, perceivers add their own benefits, with both attentional and memory mechanisms appearing to favor happy faces. These effects exist because for humans, prosocial communication is critical. Coevolution has sculpted both the signaler and the receiver to enhance the efficiency of this communication as a way to undergird our highly social nature.

    Original languageEnglish (US)
    Pages (from-to)189-194
    Number of pages6
    JournalCurrent Directions in Psychological Science
    Volume23
    Issue number3
    DOIs
    StatePublished - 2014

    Fingerprint

    Efficiency
    Visual Perception
    Communication
    Vividness
    Nature
    Coevolution
    Appearings
    Cognitive Processing

    Keywords

    • evolutionary psychology
    • facial expression
    • happiness
    • prosocial communication
    • signal detection

    ASJC Scopus subject areas

    • Psychology(all)
    • Arts and Humanities (miscellaneous)
    • Developmental and Educational Psychology

    Cite this

    The Vividness of the Happy Face. / Becker, David; Srinivasan, Narayanan.

    In: Current Directions in Psychological Science, Vol. 23, No. 3, 2014, p. 189-194.

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

    Becker, David ; Srinivasan, Narayanan. / The Vividness of the Happy Face. In: Current Directions in Psychological Science. 2014 ; Vol. 23, No. 3. pp. 189-194.
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