• Alexithymia;
  • augmenter;
  • arousal;
  • skin conductance;
  • music

Grynberg, D., Davydov, D. M., Vermeulen, N. & Luminet, O. (2012). Alexithymia is associated with an augmenter profile, but not only: Evidence for anticipation to arousing music. Scandinavian Journal of Psychology 53, 375–381.

It has been suggested that high alexithymia scorers have an ‘augmenter’ profile which amplifies their physiological and subjective responses to highly arousing stimuli. The aim of this study was to test this theory using several physiological measures. Participants listened to musical excerpts either in a ‘weak-to-strong’ or a ‘strong-to-weak’ order of arousing levels of stimuli. The results show that alexithymia was associated with an augmenter profile for subjective reports for the most arousing stimulus and with stronger skin conductance level responses in the ‘strong-to-weak’ order. These results partially support the augmenter profile and reveal that alexithymia may be associated with higher anticipation for the most arousing excerpt.