- Individual-based relative deprivation (IRD) decreases prosocial behaviors
- Authors: Hong Zhang; Man Liu; Yuan Tian
Pages: 655 - 666
Abstract: Abstract Five studies investigated the relationship between individual-based relative deprivation (IRD) and prosocial behaviors. Study 1 found that income satisfaction, a concept closely related to IRD, was negatively associated with prosocial values across cultures. Study 2 found a negative association between IRD and prosocial aspirations among a sample of Chinese university students. Study 3 revealed a negative association between IRD and volunteer behaviors. In Studies 4 and 5, we found that laboratory-induced IRD decreased undergraduate students’ prosocial values and behaviors. Moreover, Study 5 also found that the tendency to prioritize self-interest over others’ mediated the effect of IRD on prosocial behaviors. Implications of these findings are discussed.
Issue No: Vol. 40, No. 5 (2016)
- Articulating ideology: How liberals and conservatives justify political
affiliations using morality-based explanations
- Authors: Daniel M. Rempala; Bradley M. Okdie; Kilian J. Garvey
Pages: 703 - 719
Abstract: Abstract Two studies examined the degree to which participants’ were aware of their morality-based motivations when determining their political affiliations. Participants from the U.S. indicated what political party (if any) they affiliated with and explained their reasons for that affiliation. For participants who identified as “Liberal/Democrat” or “Conservative/Republican,” coders read the responses and identified themes associated with Moral Foundations Theory. In Study 1, thematic differences between liberals and conservatives paralleled previous research, although the extent of the disparities was more pronounced than expected, with the two groups showing little overlap. In Study 2, the actual influence of Moral Foundations (as measured by the Moral Foundations Questionnaire) was dramatically greater than was indicated by the coding of participants’ open-ended responses. In addition, actual disparities in use of Moral Foundations between liberals and conservatives were greater than participants’ stereotyped perceptions. We discuss how this research furthers our understanding of conscious motivations for political affiliation and can help to facilitate political discourse.
Issue No: Vol. 40, No. 5 (2016)
- Self-reported expression and experience of triumph across four countries
- Authors: Hyisung C. Hwang; David Matsumoto; Hiroshi Yamada; Aleksandra Kostić; Juliana V. Granskaya
Pages: 731 - 739
Abstract: Abstract Recent studies have suggested the existence of the emotion of triumph by documenting how its nonverbal signals are displayed and identified across cultures. The current study contributes to this literature by providing additional convergent evidence about the expression of triumph by examining self-reported expressions of triumph from participants from Japan, Russia, Serbia, and the U.S. Self-reported behavioral expressions of triumph were consistent with three factors previously found to be associated with the triumph expression (Expansion, Aggression, Attention), with the exception of a finding on one scale in one country. The Japanese were prone to report greater regulation compared to the experience of triumph, whereas Americans and Serbians reported relatively greater experience compared to regulation. Across countries, Aggression was positively correlated with self-reported experience. The self-reported expressions of triumph partially corresponded with nonverbal reactions that had been identified as triumph in previous research.
Issue No: Vol. 40, No. 5 (2016)
- Beliefs about emotion’s malleability influence state emotion
- Authors: Elizabeth T. Kneeland; Susan Nolen-Hoeksema; John F. Dovidio; June Gruber
Pages: 740 - 749
Abstract: Abstract The current study examined how manipulating information about whether emotions are fixed or malleable influences the extent to which individuals engage in different emotion regulation strategies. We hypothesized that fixed, compared to malleable, emotion beliefs would produce less effort invested in emotion regulation. Participants were randomly assigned to experimental conditions emphasizing that emotions are malleable or fixed, and then completed an autobiographical negative emotion induction. Participants reported seven different emotion regulation strategies they used during the recall task. Participants in the fixed emotion condition, compared to those in the malleable emotion condition, reported engaging significantly less in self-blame and perspective-taking. They engaged somewhat, but not significantly, less in all of the other strategies, except acceptance. These results suggest that emotion malleability beliefs can be experimentally manipulated and systematically influence subsequent emotion regulatory behavior. Implications for affective science and mental health are discussed.
Issue No: Vol. 40, No. 5 (2016)
- Self-affirmation and affective forecasting: Affirmation reduces the
anticipated impact of negative events
- Authors: Janet V. T. Pauketat; Wesley G. Moons; Jacqueline M. Chen; Diane M. Mackie; David K. Sherman
Pages: 750 - 759
Abstract: Abstract When forecasting how they will feel in the future, people overestimate the impact that imagined negative events will have on their affective states, partly because they underestimate their own psychological resiliency. Because self-affirmation enhances resiliency, two studies examined whether self-affirmation prior to forecasting reduces the extremity of affective forecasts. Participants in self-affirmation conditions completed a values scale or wrote an essay asserting their most important value, whereas participants in the no-affirmation condition asserted a relatively unimportant value. Participants then predicted their affective reactions to a negative or positive imagined event. In both studies, self-affirmation reduced the unpleasant affect expected to result from a negative event, but had no impact on affective forecasts for a positive event. This pattern was mediated by participants’ cognitive appraisals of the imagined event, but not by differential focus on that event. Results are consistent with self-affirmation activating or enhancing psychological resiliency to counteract immune neglect during affective forecasting of a negative event.
Issue No: Vol. 40, No. 5 (2016)
- Can’t get you out of my mind: empathy, distress, and recurring
thoughts about a person in need
- Abstract: Abstract Research suggests that empathic concern and distress give rise to different patterns of helping behavior. It has been proposed that this difference is caused by the effects of these emotions on recurrent thoughts about the person in need. However, no research has directly investigated this potential explanation. To remedy this, we tested the hypotheses that distress, but not empathic concern, is associated with both anticipated recurring thoughts (Study 1) and experienced recurring thoughts (Study 2) about a victim. We also tested the hypothesis that distress is associated with thoughts about the victim, whereas empathic concern is associated with thoughts about the victim’s situation (Study 3), which is potentially a consequence of the motives associated with each emotion. Lastly, we assessed the causal relations between distress, empathic concern, and recurrent thoughts (Study 4). Overall, results demonstrate a distinctive, and important, pattern of associations among empathic concern, distress, and different forms of recurrent thoughts about the emotion-eliciting stimulus.
- Self-image threat decreases stereotyping: The role of motivation toward
- Abstract: Abstract Some prior research indicated that self-image threat may lead people to stereotyping and prejudiced evaluations of others. Other studies found that self-image threat may promote less stereotypical thinking and unprejudiced behavior. In a series of three studies, we demonstrate that self-image threat may lead to either more or less stereotypical perception of the outgroup depending on the level of the individuals` motivation toward closure (NFC). The results reveal that when individuals high (vs. low) in NFC perceived a member of an outgroup, they are less likely to use stereotypical traits if their self-image had been threatened by negative feedback (Study 1) or if they had imagined an example of their own immoral activity (Studies 2 and 3). Moreover, our results demonstrate that the fear of invalidity resulting from self-image threat induction is responsible for the foregoing effects (Study 3). These results are discussed in light of theories of motivational readiness and lay epistemics.
- What motivates deviant behavior in the workplace? An examination of the
mechanisms by which procedural injustice affects deviance
- Abstract: Abstract This research examines the motivational and social-cognitive processes underlying the procedural injustice and deviance relationship. Based on psychological need and self-determination theories, it was hypothesized that intrinsic motivation would mediate the relationship between procedural injustice and deviance. Based on the general aggression model and social-cognitive theory, it was hypothesized that this positive indirect effect would be moderated by dispositional aggression. Two studies were conducted, including multi-wave and multi-source data, to test these relationships through mediation and moderated mediation procedures. Results supported both hypotheses: intrinsic motivation mediated the procedural injustice and deviance relationship; and this positive indirect effect was moderated by dispositional aggression, such that higher levels of aggression increased the magnitude of the indirect effect. Results were consistent across multiple measures of intrinsic motivation, aggression, and deviance (self- and other-report). Theoretical and practical contributions include support for a process-based theory of deviant behavior in the workplace and organizational interventions aimed at enriching one’s job to develop greater feelings of intrinsic motivation.
- Anger in response to challenge: children’s emotion socialization
predicts approach versus avoidance
- Authors: Patricia A. Smiley; Katherine V. Buttitta; Samuel Y. Chung; John K. Coffey; Binghuang A. Wang; Jessica L. Borelli
Abstract: Abstract Negative emotion is typically associated with avoidance behavior; however, recent advances in the adult literature show that unlike some emotions (sadness, shame), anger predicts both approach and avoidance. Here we propose that socialization to suppress anger will play a role in whether children who express anger respond to a performance challenge with approach or avoidance. Children (N = 79; M age = 11.4 years) reported perceptions of parental use of positive conditional regard (PCR) to socialize anger suppression and worked on four unsolvable puzzles. We measured change in verbalized puzzle-solving strategies during failure, and coded emotion expression on the final puzzle. We examined whether negative emotion type (shame/sadness vs. anger) and PCR for anger predicted change in strategy use, and whether the association between level of PCR for anger and approach-avoidance (change in strategy use) depended on type of negative emotion expressed. Neither emotion expression nor level of PCR anger predicted strategy use; however, type of negative emotion moderated the association between PCR anger and change in strategy use, controlling for NCR anger. For children who displayed anger, low PCR was associated with increased strategy use, and high PCR was associated with decreased strategy use. We discuss the role of emotion socialization in shaping approach and avoidance motivation.
- Performance, incentives, and needs for autonomy, competence, and
relatedness: a meta-analysis
- Authors: Christopher P. Cerasoli; Jessica M. Nicklin; Alexander S. Nassrelgrgawi
Abstract: Abstract Although self-determination theory (SDT) is one of the most widely cited theories of human motivation and function, critics have questioned the practical utility of its three needs (i.e., autonomy, competence, and relatedness) in performance contexts. We conduct a meta-analysis (k = 108, N = 30,648) to explore the magnitude and boundary conditions of need satisfaction and performance. As expected, autonomy (ρ = .28), competence (ρ = .37), and relatedness (ρ = .25) predict performance. Incentivization per se has little impact on need-satisfaction: instead, the need satisfaction → performance relationship is moderated by incentive salience. Consistent with a crowding-out hypothesis, need satisfaction matters less to performance when incentives are directly salient (ρ = .22) and more when indirectly salient (ρ = .45). Our meta-analysis demonstrates that indirectly salient incentives and need-satisfaction are indeed compatible, providing a direct response to criticisms of SDT in performance contexts. Additional unexpected findings and future directions are discussed.
- Why are attitude–behaviour inconsistencies uncomfortable? Using
motivational theories to explore individual differences in dissonance
arousal and motivation to compensate
- Authors: Karine J. Lavergne; Luc G. Pelletier
Abstract: Abstract Using cognitive dissonance theories and self-determination theory, we explored the role of individual differences in global and contextual motivational orientations on dissonance arousal processes following spontaneous attitude–behaviour inconsistencies (ABIs). Study 1 (N = 382) showed that individual differences in global motivation relate to the frequency of ABIs and dissonance arousal across important life domains. Studies 2 (N = 282) and 3 (N = 202) showed that individual differences in contextual motivation toward the environment predict the relative frequency of ABIs and the quantity and quality of proximal motivation to compensate for ABIs in that context. Autonomous motivation was associated with a tendency to compensate for ABIs to both reduce dissonance and restore self-integrity. Controlled motivation disposed individuals to reduce dissonance to protect ego-invested self-structures, and to be indifferent to non self-threatening ABIs. Amotivation left people indifferent to ABIs. Individual differences in motivational orientations could explain why ABIs are uncomfortable and motivate people to compensate differently when they face ABIs.
- The effects of implicit and explicit affiliation motives on vagal activity
in motive-relevant situations
- Authors: Elisabeth Prestele; Friederike X. R. Gerstenberg; Birk Hagemeyer; Fay C. M. Geisler
Abstract: Abstract We investigated the independent and interactive effects of the implicit need for affiliation (nAFF) and the explicit self-attributed need for affiliation (sanAFF) on parasympathetic vagal activity (indexed via heart rate variability) in three motive-relevant situations: in a socioevaluative stress situation (N = 49), in a socially ambiguous situation (N = 50), and during socially supported recovery from stress (both subsamples). Vagal activity has been linked with self-regulation and social engagement. Vagal withdrawal has been found to accompany stress responses, whereas vagal advance has been found to accompany attenuated stress and affiliative behavior. Response surface analyses in the current study revealed additive but opposite effects on vagal activity for nAFF (vagal advance) and sanAFF (vagal withdrawal) during the socioevaluative stress situation, high nAFF and low sanAFF incongruence predicted vagal withdrawal in the socially ambiguous situation, and sanAFF predicted vagal advance during socially supported recovery from stress. We suggest that assessing reactions to motive-relevant stress situations represents a profitable approach for investigating the differential effects of implicit and explicit motives.
- Automaticity of the interpersonal attitude effect on facial mimicry: It
takes effort to smile at neutral others but not those we like
- Authors: Heidi S. Blocker; Daniel N. McIntosh
Abstract: Abstract People often mimic others more if the other is liked, a member of an ingroup, or in a cooperative relationship with the observer; we call this the interpersonal attitude effect. This study examines the degree to which this attitude effect on mimicry is an automatic or an effortful process. While under cognitive load or no load, participants observed positive, negative, and neutral others making emotional expressions. Electromyography measured corrugator supercilii (knits brow) and zygomaticus major (raises corners of mouth) activity. Under load, participants mimicked smiles of positive individuals but not neutral or negative individuals. During no-load trials, participants did not mimic negative individuals, but did mimic smiles of neutral and positive individuals. Participants enhanced their smiles in response to the smiles of liked others without effort, but smiling at neutral others’ smiles required greater cognitive resources.
- Reflecting on schadenfreude: serious consequences of a misfortune for
which one is not responsible diminish previously expressed schadenfreude;
the role of immorality appraisals and moral emotions
- Authors: Mariëtte Berndsen; N. T. Feather
Abstract: Abstract Participants (Study 1: N = 138, Study 2: N = 153) responded to a video in which a person suffered a mishap. The studies manipulated whether or not the person was responsible for the mishap and the degree to which the consequences were subsequently found to be serious. Results of Study 1 showed reduction in schadenfreude and more compassion for the victim in the serious condition due to appraisals that it was immoral to laugh about the misfortune. The stronger these appraisals and the stronger the initial schadenfreude, the stronger were moral emotions (guilt, shame, and regret) about initially expressed schadenfreude. Moral emotions and compassion fostered prosocial behavior. Study 2 extended these results by showing that seriousness of the consequences acted as a moderator for most of these findings with significant effects occurring in the serious condition only. Most reduction in schadenfreude occurred when the consequences were serious and when the person was less responsible for the misfortune. The studies extend past research by investigating schadenfreude and other emotions in a context that does not involve social comparison and where participants reflected on their initial expressions of schadenfreude.
- How heritable is empathy? Differential effects of measurement and
- Authors: Martin Melchers; Christian Montag; Martin Reuter; Frank M. Spinath; Elisabeth Hahn
Abstract: Abstract Empathy is an important psychological concept influencing social interaction. However, knowledge about its etiological components is still scarce. Estimates for the heritability of empathy range between 0 and 70 % depending on the sample, method of measurement, and level of aggregation. In this study, we investigated the heritability of empathy using an extended twin design. We employed the self-report questionnaire Interpersonal Reactivity Index and an emotion recognition task (Reading the Mind in the Eyes Test). N = 742 twins and non-twin siblings were investigated. For affective empathy and the behavioral paradigm, we found heritability estimates between 52 and 57 %. For cognitive empathy, genetic variance was smaller (27 %), indicating that the heritability of empathy depends on the measured subcomponent, which could be relevant for intervention programs like empathy or compassion trainings. Environmental influences on empathy are mainly effects of non-shared environment, which is an important finding for our understanding of the development of empathy.
- Do you get what you pay for? Sales incentives and implications for
motivation and changes in turnover intention and work effort
- Authors: Bård Kuvaas; Robert Buch; Marylène Gagné; Anders Dysvik; Jacques Forest
Abstract: Abstract This study investigated relations between pay-for-performance incentives designed to vary in instrumentality (annual pay-for-performance, quarterly pay-for-performance, and base pay level) and employee outcomes (self-reported work effort and turnover intention) in a longitudinal study spanning more than 2 years. After controlling for perceived instrumentality, merit pay increase, and the initial values of the dependent variables, the amount of base pay was positively related to work effort and negatively related to turnover intention, where both relationships were mediated by autonomous motivation. The amounts of quarterly and annual pay-for-performance were both positively related to controlled motivation, but were differently related to the dependent variables due to different relations with autonomous motivation.
- Developmental differences in children’s interpersonal emotion
- Authors: Belén López-Pérez; Ellie L. Wilson; Giulia Dellaria; Michaela Gummerum
Abstract: Abstract Previous research on interpersonal emotion regulation (ER) in childhood has been rather unsystematic, focusing mainly on children’s prosocial behaviour, and has been conducted in the absence of an integrative emotion theoretical framework. The present research relied on the interpersonal affect classification proposed by Niven et al. (Emotion, 9:498–509, 2009) to investigate children’s use of different interpersonal ER strategies. The study drew on two samples: 180 parents of children aged between 3 and 8 years reported about a situation where their child was able to change what another person was feeling in order to make them feel better. In addition, 126 children between 3- and 8-years old answered two questions about how they could improve others’ mood. Results from both samples showed age differences in children’s use of interpersonal ER strategies. As expected, ‘affective engagement’ (i.e., focusing on the person or the problem) and ‘cognitive engagement’ (i.e., appraising the situation from a different perspective) were mainly used by 7–8 years-old, whereas ‘attention’ (i.e., distracting and valuing) was most used by 3–4 and 5–6 years-old. ‘Humor’ (i.e., laughing with the target) remained stable across the different age groups. The present research provides more information about the developmental patterns for each specific interpersonal emotion regulation strategy.
- The shapes associated with approach/avoidance words
- Authors: Carlos Velasco; Alejandro Salgado-Montejo; Andrew J. Elliot; Andy T. Woods; Jorge Alvarado; Charles Spence
Abstract: Abstract People prefer curved and symmetrical shapes to their angular and asymmetrical counterparts. While it is known that stimulus valence is central to approach and avoidance motivation, the exact nature of the relationship between curvature/symmetry and approach/avoidance motivation still needs to be clarified. Experiment 1 was designed to investigate whether simple shapes are associated with approach and avoidance words. Participants found it easier to match more symmetrical shapes with approach words. In Experiment 2, symmetry was differentially associated with approach words and was rated significantly higher on the approach dimension than asymmetry. Next, we assessed whether object valence and object curvature (Experiment 3) or symmetry (Experiment 4) would lead to different associations to approach and avoidance words. Only object valence had a significant influence on participants’ ratings, with the positively-valenced objects being more closely associated with approach words than their negatively-valenced counterparts. These results highlight the complex relation between visual properties of objects, their valence, and appetitive and aversive categories.
- Primal emotional-affective expressive foundations of human facial
- Authors: Christian Montag; Jaak Panksepp
Abstract: Abstract Emotional facial expressions provide important insights into various valenced feelings of humans. Recent cross-species neuroscientific advances offer insights into molecular foundations of mammalian affects and hence, by inference, the related emotional/affective facial expressions in humans. This is premised on deep homologies based on affective neuroscience studies of valenced primary emotional systems across species. Thus, emerging theoretical perspectives suggest that ancient cross-species emotional systems are intimately linked not only to emotional action patterns evident in all mammals, but also, by inference, distinct emotional facial expressions studied intensively in humans. Thus, the goal of the present theoretical work was to relate categories of human emotional facial expressions—e.g. especially of anger fear, joy and sadness—to respective underlying primary cross-mammalian emotional circuits. This can potentially provide coherent theoretical frameworks for the eventual molecular study of emotional facial expressions in humans.
- An existential function of evil: The effects of religiosity and
compromised meaning on belief in magical evil forces
- Authors: Clay Routledge; Andrew A. Abeyta; Christina Roylance
Abstract: Abstract In three studies, we tested the assertion that the need for meaning motivates belief in magical evil forces. Believing that there are magical evil forces at work in the world, though unpleasant, may contribute to perceptions of meaning in life as the existence of such forces supports a broader meaning-providing religious worldview. We assessed religiosity, measured (Study 1) or manipulated (Study 2) perceptions of meaning, and assessed the extent to which participants attributed a murderer’s actions to magical evil causes (e.g., having a dark soul). Low levels of perceived meaning or experimentally threatened meaning were associated with a greater tendency to make magical evil attributions, but only among individuals reporting high levels of religiosity. In Study 3, we assessed religiosity, experimentally threatened perceptions of meaning, and measured general belief in magical evil forces. Meaning threat increased belief in magical evil, but only among those reporting high levels of religiosity.