The intercultural recognition of emotional expressions by three national racial groups: English, Italian and Japanese

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Abstract

Similar samples of English, Italian and Japanese subjects were asked to identify 8 emotional states and 4 interpersonal attitudes from video-taped expressions of 2 performers from each of these cultures. AN sets of judgements were above chance, except Italians judging Japanese. The Japanese subjects were no different from English and Italian subjects in recognition ability but the Japanese performances were harder to recognize supporting Ekman's theory of display rules; in fact all Japanese expressions were difficult to recognize, with the exception of happy-friendly. The Japanese (performers) make a clearer distinction between sad and depressed than other cultural groups, but did not distinguish between happy and friendly, or between angry and hostile.

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