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Caring or daring? Exploring the impact of facial masculinity/femininity and gender category information on first impressions

Walker, Mirella and Wänke, Michaela. (2017) Caring or daring? Exploring the impact of facial masculinity/femininity and gender category information on first impressions. PLoS ONE, 12 (10). e0181306.

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Abstract

In two studies we disentangled and systematically investigated the impact of subtle facial cues to masculinity/femininity and gender category information on first impressions. Participants judged the same unambiguously male and female target persons–either with masculine or feminine facial features slightly enhanced–regarding stereotypically masculine (i.e., competence) and feminine (i.e., warmth) personality traits. Results of both studies showed a strong effect of facial masculinity/femininity: Masculine-looking persons were seen as colder and more competent than feminine-looking persons. This effect of facial masculinity/femininity was not only found for typical (i.e., masculine-looking men and feminine-looking women) and atypical (i.e., masculine-looking women and feminine-looking men) category members; it was even found to be more pronounced for atypical than for typical category members. This finding reveals that comparing atypical members to the group prototype results in pronounced effects of facial masculinity/femininity. These contrast effects for atypical members predominate assimilation effects for typical members. Intriguingly, very subtle facial cues to masculinity/femininity strongly guide first impressions and may have more impact than the gender category.
Faculties and Departments:07 Faculty of Psychology > Departement Psychologie > Forschungsbereich Sozial-, Wirtschafts- und Entscheidungspsychologie > Sozialpsychologie (Greifeneder)
UniBasel Contributors:Walker, Mirella
Item Type:Article, refereed
Article Subtype:Research Article
Publisher:Public Library of Science
e-ISSN:1932-6203
Note:Publication type according to Uni Basel Research Database: Journal article
Language:English
Identification Number:
Last Modified:31 Aug 2018 06:38
Deposited On:21 Dec 2017 08:42

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