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Beyond Surprise: The Puzzle of Infants' Expressive Reactions to Expectancy Violation

Published in Emotion. 2004, vol. 4, no. 4, p. 389-402
Abstract The reactions of 58 infants to expectancy violation by digitally filtering the experimenter's voice were studied in a cross-sectional design for ages 5, 7, 9, 11-12, and 14 months. The results show that behavioral freezing and changes in gaze direction, but not facial or vocal expression, are reliable responses to expectancy violation. The pattern suggests that a transition in the infant's capacity for cognitive evaluation of novel and discrepant events may occur around age 9 months. These findings confirm the consistent failure to find prototypical facial surprise reactions in research on novel or impossible situations. Componential theories of emotion, which predict adaptive behavior patterns from appraisal processes, may provide clues for underlying mechanisms and generate hypotheses on age-related changes in emotional expression.
Keywords InfantsPuzzle
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Article (Published version) (525 Kb) - document accessible for UNIGE members only Limited access to UNIGE
Research group Affective sciences
Projects FNS: 10-2210.81
FNS: 11-30036.90
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SCHERER, Klaus R., ZENTNER, Marcel Robert, STERN, Daniel. Beyond Surprise: The Puzzle of Infants' Expressive Reactions to Expectancy Violation. In: Emotion, 2004, vol. 4, n° 4, p. 389-402. doi: 10.1037/1528-3542.4.4.389 https://archive-ouverte.unige.ch/unige:101542

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Deposited on : 2018-01-22

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