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Effect of context on mimicry and emotional contagion : does disliking inhibit mimicry and emotional contagion?

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Title: Effect of context on mimicry and emotional contagion : does disliking inhibit mimicry and emotional contagion?
Authors: Aylward, Alison Gastorf
Issue Date: 2008
Abstract: Previous research on mimicry suggests that this process occurs automatically in response to perception of a behavior or emotion. However, there is evidence that goals such as liking or having a desire to affiliate with another may affect mimicry of that person. This study tested the hypothesis that encountering a socially undesirable person will inhibit mimicry and contagion while encountering a highly socially desirable person will enhance mimicry and contagion. Participants were induced to dislike, feel neutral about, or like another person. They were then shown videos of that person recounting either a sad or happy story. Participants' reactions to the videos were taped and coded for mimicry. They also rated their own level of happiness after both the sad and happy stories. In partial confirmation of the hypothesis, results showed that for sad emotions, disliking the target caused significantly less mimicry than feeling neutral about the target while liking the target caused significantly more contagion than feeling neutral about the target However, contrary to the hypothesis, those who felt neutral mimicked the most and felt the least contagion. For the happy video, there was no effect of likeability condition on mimicry and contagion.
Description: Thesis (M.A.)--University of Hawaii at Manoa, 2008.
Includes bibliographical references (leaves 44-49).
viii, 49 leaves, bound 29 cm
Rights: All UHM dissertations and theses are protected by copyright. They may be viewed from this source for any purpose, but reproduction or distribution in any format is prohibited without written permission from the copyright owner.
Appears in Collections:M.A. - Psychology

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