A call for the empirical investigation of tear stimuli

Krivan, Sarah J., and Thomas, Nicole A. (2020) A call for the empirical investigation of tear stimuli. Frontiers in Psychology, 11. 52.

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Emotional crying is a uniquely human behavior, which typically elicits helping and empathic responses from observers. However, tears can also be used to deceive. "Crocodile tears" are insincere tears used to manipulate the observer and foster prosocial responses. The ability to discriminate between genuine and fabricated emotional displays is critical to social functioning. When insincere emotional displays are detected, they are most often met with backlash. Conversely, genuine displays foster prosocial responses. However, the majority of crying research conducted to date has used posed stimuli featuring artificial tears. As such it is yet to be determined how the artificial nature of these displays impacts person perception. Throughout this article, we discuss the necessity for empirical investigation of the differences (or similarities) in responses to posed and genuine tearful expressions. We will explore the recent adoption of genuine stimuli in emotion research and review the existing research using tear stimuli. We conclude by offering suggestions and considerations for future advancement of the emotional crying field through investigation of both posed and genuine tear stimuli.

Item ID: 62563
Item Type: Article (Research - C1)
ISSN: 1664-1078
Keywords: tear effect, face perception, adult crying, emotion, interpersonal communication, crocodile tears
Copyright Information: Copyright © 2020 Krivan and Thomas. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY). The use, distribution or reproduction in other forums is permitted, provided the original author(s) and the copyright owner(s) are credited and that the original publication in this journal is cited, in accordance with accepted academic practice. No use, distribution or reproduction is permitted which does not comply with these terms.
Funders: Australian Government Research Training Program Scholarship, Australian Research Council (ARC) Discovery Early Career Researcher Award (DECRA)
Projects and Grants: ARC Discovery Early Career Researcher Award DE150101108
Date Deposited: 18 Mar 2020 07:35
FoR Codes: 52 PSYCHOLOGY > 5202 Biological psychology > 520203 Cognitive neuroscience @ 50%
52 PSYCHOLOGY > 5202 Biological psychology > 520207 Social and affective neuroscience @ 50%
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