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  Do infants associate spiders and snakes with fearful facial expressions?

Hoehl, S., & Pauen, S. (2017). Do infants associate spiders and snakes with fearful facial expressions? Evolution and Human Behavior, 38(3), 404-413. doi:10.1016/j.evolhumbehav.2016.12.001.

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Item Permalink: http://hdl.handle.net/11858/00-001M-0000-002D-EE4B-A Version Permalink: http://hdl.handle.net/21.11116/0000-0003-C85C-5
Genre: Journal Article

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 Creators:
Hoehl, Stefanie1, 2, Author              
Pauen, Sabina2, Author
Affiliations:
1Max Planck Research Group Early Social Cognition, MPI for Human Cognitive and Brain Sciences, Max Planck Society, Leipzig, DE, ou_2355694              
2Institute of Psychology, University of Heidelberg, Germany, ou_persistent22              

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Free keywords: Infancy; Fear; Social learning; Preparedness; ERP
 Abstract: Do infants preferentially learn to fear stimuli that represent an ancestral danger? This question was addressed using event-related brain potentials in 9-month-old infants (N = 38). In Experiment 1, infants saw fearful and neutral faces gazing towards spiders and flowers. Then spiders and flowers were presented again without faces. Infants responded with increased attention (signaled by the Negative central, Nc component) to stimuli associated with fear. In particular, spiders that were gaze-cued with a fearful as compared to a neutral expression elicited an increased Nc response. In Experiment 2, targets were snakes and fish. Snakes elicited increased Nc amplitude compared to fish irrespective of emotion condition. Results speak to the evolution-based fear-relevance of spiders and snakes. Our findings provide partial support for social fear learning and preparedness theory (Experiment 1) and non-associative accounts of fear acquisition (Experiment 2). We conclude that both kinds of fear acquisition seem to play a role in early human development.

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Language(s): eng - English
 Dates: 2015-03-142016-12-012017-12-102017-05
 Publication Status: Published in print
 Pages: -
 Publishing info: -
 Table of Contents: -
 Rev. Method: Peer
 Degree: -

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Project name : -
Grant ID : HO 4342/2-2
Funding program : -
Funding organization : Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft (DFG)

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Title: Evolution and Human Behavior
Source Genre: Journal
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Pages: - Volume / Issue: 38 (3) Sequence Number: - Start / End Page: 404 - 413 Identifier: ISSN: 1090-5138
CoNE: https://pure.mpg.de/cone/journals/resource/954925609895