On the ups and downs of emotion: testing between conceptual-metaphor and polarity accounts of emotional valence-spatial location interactions

Lynott, Dermot and Coventry, Kenny (2014) On the ups and downs of emotion: testing between conceptual-metaphor and polarity accounts of emotional valence-spatial location interactions. Psychonomic Bulletin and Review, 21 (1). pp. 218-26. ISSN 1069-9384

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Abstract

In the past decade, many studies have focused on the relationship between emotional valence and vertical spatial positions from a processing perspective. Lakoff and Johnson's (1980) work on conceptual metaphor has traditionally motivated these investigations, but recent work (Lakens in J Exp Psychol: Learn, Mem Cogn, 38: 726-736, 2012) has suggested that polarity-based perspectives offer an alternative account of response time patterns. We contrasted the predictions of these two theories using a new facial emotion recognition task, in which participants made speeded responses to happy or sad faces on a display, with the spatial location of those faces being manipulated. In three experiments (two-alternative forced choice tasks and a go/no-go task), we found a pattern of responses consistent with a polarity-based account, but inconsistent with key predictions of the conceptual-metaphor account. Overall, congruency effects were observed for positively valenced items, but not for negatively valenced items. These findings demonstrate that polarity effects extend to nonlinguistic stimuli and beyond two-alternative forced choice tasks. We discuss the results in terms of common-coding approaches to task-response mappings.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: emotion recognition,conceptual metaphor,spatial congruency,representation,polarity
Faculty \ School: Faculty of Social Sciences > School of Psychology
Depositing User: Pure Connector
Date Deposited: 17 May 2016 14:00
Last Modified: 22 Apr 2020 00:41
URI: https://ueaeprints.uea.ac.uk/id/eprint/58789
DOI: 10.3758/s13423-013-0481-5

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