Use this URL to cite or link to this record in EThOS:
Title: Emotion recognition in the human face and voice
Author: Kuhn, Lisa Katharina
ISNI:       0000 0004 5359 6688
Awarding Body: Brunel University
Current Institution: Brunel University
Date of Award: 2015
Availability of Full Text:
Access from EThOS:
Access from Institution:
At a perceptual level, faces and voices consist of very different sensory inputs and therefore, information processing from one modality can be independent of information processing from another modality (Adolphs & Tranel, 1999). However, there may also be a shared neural emotion network that processes stimuli independent of modality (Peelen, Atkinson, & Vuilleumier, 2010) or emotions may be processed on a more abstract cognitive level, based on meaning rather than on perceptual signals. This thesis therefore aimed to examine emotion recognition across two separate modalities in a within-subject design, including a cognitive Chapter 1 with 45 British adults, a developmental Chapter 2 with 54 British children as well as a cross-cultural Chapter 3 with 98 German and British children, and 78 German and British adults. Intensity ratings as well as choice reaction times and correlations of confusion analyses of emotions across modalities were analysed throughout. Further, an ERP Chapter investigated the time-course of emotion recognition across two modalities. Highly correlated rating profiles of emotions in faces and voices were found which suggests a similarity in emotion recognition across modalities. Emotion recognition in primary-school children improved with age for both modalities although young children relied mainly on faces. British as well as German participants showed comparable patterns for rating basic emotions, but subtle differences were also noted and Germans perceived emotions as less intense than British. Overall, behavioural results reported in the present thesis are consistent with the idea of a general, more abstract level of emotion processing which may act independently of modality. This could be based, for example, on a shared emotion brain network or some more general, higher-level cognitive processes which are activated across a range of modalities. Although emotion recognition abilities are already evident during childhood, this thesis argued for a contribution of ‘nurture’ to emotion mechanisms as recognition was influenced by external factors such as development and culture.
Supervisor: Wydell, T.; Garrido, L. Sponsor: Economic and Social Research Council
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: Supramodal ; Developmental ; Cross-cultural ; Emotions