Negative emotion and perceived social class. / Bjornsdottir, R. Thora; Rule, Nicholas O.

In: Emotion, Vol. 20, No. 6, 2020, p. 1031-1041.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

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Negative emotion and perceived social class. / Bjornsdottir, R. Thora; Rule, Nicholas O.

In: Emotion, Vol. 20, No. 6, 2020, p. 1031-1041.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Harvard

Bjornsdottir, RT & Rule, NO 2020, 'Negative emotion and perceived social class', Emotion, vol. 20, no. 6, pp. 1031-1041. https://doi.org/10.1037/emo0000613

APA

Vancouver

Author

Bjornsdottir, R. Thora ; Rule, Nicholas O. / Negative emotion and perceived social class. In: Emotion. 2020 ; Vol. 20, No. 6. pp. 1031-1041.

BibTeX

@article{238874345ac94f09b6c8ad0add5d6404,
title = "Negative emotion and perceived social class",
abstract = "People use stereotypes about the benefits of wealth and success to infer that rich people look happier than poor people. For instance, perceivers categorize smiling faces as rich more often than they categorize neutral faces as rich. Moreover, richer people{\textquoteright}s neutral faces in fact display more positive affect than poorer people{\textquoteright}s neutral faces. Applying these emotion stereotypes thus enables perceivers to accurately classify targets{\textquoteright} social class from their neutral faces. Extant research has left unexplained whether perceivers use broad differences in valence or specific emotions when judging others{\textquoteright} social class, however. We tested this here by examining how four negatively valenced emotions influence perceptions of social class: sadness, anger, disgust, and fear. Whereas sadness and anger relate to both stereotypes and actual correlates of lower social class (e.g., depression and hostility, respectively), no established links suggest that poorer people should express or experience greater disgust or fear. Consistent with stereotypes of lower-class people, targets expressing sadness and anger were categorized as poor or working class more often than neutral targets were. Targets expressing disgust and fear also looked lower class than neutral targets did, however. These combined findings therefore suggest that perceivers rely on valence differences rather than specific emotions to judge social class, indicating that the broad perception of low social class as a negative state (and high social class as a positive state) may drive face-based impressions of social class.",
author = "Bjornsdottir, {R. Thora} and Rule, {Nicholas O.}",
year = "2020",
doi = "10.1037/emo0000613",
language = "English",
volume = "20",
pages = "1031--1041",
journal = "Emotion",
issn = "1528-3542",
publisher = "American Psychological Association Inc.",
number = "6",

}

RIS

TY - JOUR

T1 - Negative emotion and perceived social class

AU - Bjornsdottir, R. Thora

AU - Rule, Nicholas O.

PY - 2020

Y1 - 2020

N2 - People use stereotypes about the benefits of wealth and success to infer that rich people look happier than poor people. For instance, perceivers categorize smiling faces as rich more often than they categorize neutral faces as rich. Moreover, richer people’s neutral faces in fact display more positive affect than poorer people’s neutral faces. Applying these emotion stereotypes thus enables perceivers to accurately classify targets’ social class from their neutral faces. Extant research has left unexplained whether perceivers use broad differences in valence or specific emotions when judging others’ social class, however. We tested this here by examining how four negatively valenced emotions influence perceptions of social class: sadness, anger, disgust, and fear. Whereas sadness and anger relate to both stereotypes and actual correlates of lower social class (e.g., depression and hostility, respectively), no established links suggest that poorer people should express or experience greater disgust or fear. Consistent with stereotypes of lower-class people, targets expressing sadness and anger were categorized as poor or working class more often than neutral targets were. Targets expressing disgust and fear also looked lower class than neutral targets did, however. These combined findings therefore suggest that perceivers rely on valence differences rather than specific emotions to judge social class, indicating that the broad perception of low social class as a negative state (and high social class as a positive state) may drive face-based impressions of social class.

AB - People use stereotypes about the benefits of wealth and success to infer that rich people look happier than poor people. For instance, perceivers categorize smiling faces as rich more often than they categorize neutral faces as rich. Moreover, richer people’s neutral faces in fact display more positive affect than poorer people’s neutral faces. Applying these emotion stereotypes thus enables perceivers to accurately classify targets’ social class from their neutral faces. Extant research has left unexplained whether perceivers use broad differences in valence or specific emotions when judging others’ social class, however. We tested this here by examining how four negatively valenced emotions influence perceptions of social class: sadness, anger, disgust, and fear. Whereas sadness and anger relate to both stereotypes and actual correlates of lower social class (e.g., depression and hostility, respectively), no established links suggest that poorer people should express or experience greater disgust or fear. Consistent with stereotypes of lower-class people, targets expressing sadness and anger were categorized as poor or working class more often than neutral targets were. Targets expressing disgust and fear also looked lower class than neutral targets did, however. These combined findings therefore suggest that perceivers rely on valence differences rather than specific emotions to judge social class, indicating that the broad perception of low social class as a negative state (and high social class as a positive state) may drive face-based impressions of social class.

U2 - 10.1037/emo0000613

DO - 10.1037/emo0000613

M3 - Article

VL - 20

SP - 1031

EP - 1041

JO - Emotion

JF - Emotion

SN - 1528-3542

IS - 6

ER -