Piotr Winkielman

Piotr Winkielman
University of California, San Diego | UCSD · Department of Psychology

PhD

About

150
Publications
92,287
Reads
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Citations
Introduction
I almost never check the inbox here. If you are requesting reprints, you can download most of my publications from here: http://winkielmanlab.ucsd.edu/publications/ See my lab page for more information about our research: http://winkielmanlab.ucsd.edu
Additional affiliations
July 2003 - present
University of California, San Diego
Position
  • Professor (Full)

Publications

Publications (150)
Article
It is well established that processing fluency impacts preference judgments and physiological reactions indicative of affect. Yet, little is known about how fluency influences motivation-related action. Here, we offer a novel demonstration that fluency facilitates action-tendencies related to approach. Four experiments investigated this action effe...
Article
Full-text available
The spontaneous mimicry of others' emotional facial expressions constitutes a rudimentary form of empathy and facilitates social understanding. Here, we show that human participants spontaneously match facial expressions of an android physically present in the room with them. This mimicry occurs even though these participants find the android unset...
Article
Social information processing often involves categorization. When such categorization is difficult, the disfluency may elicit negative affect that could generalize to a variety of stimulus judgments. In the current studies we experimentally apply this theoretical analysis to two classic and highly socially relevant facial attractiveness phenomena:...
Article
Major theories propose that spontaneous responding to others' actions involves mirroring, or direct matching. Responding to facial expressions is assumed to follow this matching principle: People smile to smiles and frown to frowns. We demonstrate here that social power fundamentally changes spontaneous facial mimicry of emotional expressions, ther...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
Loneliness has been associated with negative outcomes for physical and mental health. Understanding how people express and cope with various forms of loneliness is critical for early screening and targeted interventions to reduce loneliness , particularly among vulnerable groups such as young adults. To examine how different forms of loneliness and...
Preprint
Full-text available
Blocking facial mimicry can disrupt recognition of emotion stimuli. Many previous studies have focused on facial expressions, and it remains unclear whether this generalizes to other types of emotional expressions. Furthermore, by emphasizing categorical recognition judgments, previous studies neglected the role of mimicry in other processing stage...
Article
Full-text available
Objectives: This study analyzed Polish dentists' knowledge of the SARS-CoV-2 virus and the main problems in their work during the early phase of the pandemic. Methods: Dentists responded to an online anonymous survey consisting of 57 questions relating to socio-demographics, knowledge about COVID-19, and office procedures. The obtained data were...
Preprint
Full-text available
The present study investigated facial responses to emotional sounds that represent social (e.g., laughter, screams) and non-social domains (e.g., instrumental music). Such cross-channel responses allow for examination of mechanisms involved in spontaneous mimicry. In order to address the role of visual experience in facial response to sounds, we co...
Article
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Loneliness—perceived social isolation—is defined as a discrepancy between existing social relationships and desired quality of relationships. Whereas most research has focused on existing relationships, we consider the standards against which people compare them. Participants who made downward social or temporal comparisons that depicted their cont...
Article
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This review explores spontaneous mimicry in the context of three questions. The first question concerns the role of spontaneous mimicry in processing conceptual information. The second question concerns the debate whether spontaneous mimicry is driven by simple associative processes or reflects higher-order processes such as goals, intentions, and...
Article
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Numerous studies show that bodily states shape affect and cognition. Here, we investigated whether incidental physiological arousal impacted perceived familiarity for novel images depicting real-world scenes. Participants provided familiarity ratings for a series of high- and low-arousal emotional images, once after a cycling session (to increase h...
Article
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Gaze direction is an important stimulus that signals key details about social (dis)engagement and objects in our physical environment. Here, we explore how gaze direction influences the perceiver's processing of bodily information. Specifically, we examined how averted versus direct gaze modifies the operation of effector-centered representations (...
Article
Humans readily form social impressions, such as attractiveness and trustworthiness, from a stranger’s facial features. Understanding the provenance of these impressions has clear scientific importance and societal implications. Motivated by the efficient coding hypothesis of brain representation, as well as Claude Shannon’s theoretical result that...
Article
As social beings, humans harbor an evolved capacity for loneliness – perceived social isolation. Loneliness is associated with atypical affective and social processing, as well as physiological dysregulation. We investigated how loneliness influences spontaneous facial mimicry (SFM), an interpersonal response involved in social connection and emoti...
Article
Full-text available
As social beings, humans harbor an evolved capacity for loneliness – perceived social isolation. Loneliness is associated with atypical affective and social processing, as well as physiological dysregulation. We investigated how loneliness influences spontaneous facial mimicry (SFM), an interpersonal response involved in social connection and emoti...
Article
A classic phenomenon known as prototype preference effect (PPE) or beauty-in-averageness effect is that prototypical exemplars of a neutral category are preferred over atypical exemplars. This PPE has been explained in terms of deviance avoidance, hedonic fluency, or preference for certainty and familiarity. However, typicality also facilitates gre...
Article
Full-text available
Mimicry, and especially spontaneous facial mimicry, is a rudimentary element of social–emotional experience that is well-conserved across numerous species. Although such mimicry is thought to be a relatively automatic process, research indicates that contextual factors can influence mimicry, especially in humans. Here, we extend this work by invest...
Article
Full-text available
Social interactions require quick perception, interpretation, and categorization of faces, with facial features offering cues to emotions, intentions, and traits. Importantly, reactions to faces depend not only on their features but also on their processing fluency, with disfluent faces suffering social devaluation. The current research used electr...
Article
Full-text available
This review explores spontaneous mimicry in the context of three questions. The first question concerns the role of spontaneous mimicry in processing conceptual information. The second question concerns the debate whether spontaneous mimicry is driven by simple associative processes or reflects higher-order processes such as goals, intentions, and...
Article
Spontaneous mimicry appears fundamental to emotional perception and contagion, especially when it involves facial emotional expressions. Here we cover recent evidence on spontaneous mimicry from ethology, psychology and neuroscience, in non-human and human animals. We first consider how mimicry unfolds in non-human animals (particularly primates) a...
Preprint
Many studies have explored the evaluative effects of vertical (up/down) or horizontal (left/right) spatial locations. However, little is known about the role of information that comes from the front and back. Based on multiple theoretical considerations, we propose that spatial location of sounds is a cue for message valence, such that a message co...
Article
Full-text available
Interoception – the process of sensing bodily signals – has gained much interest in recent years, due to its role in physical and mental well-being. Here, we focus on the role of interoception in social connection, which is a relatively new and growing research area. Studies in this area suggest that interoception may help in appraising physiologic...
Article
Full-text available
Interoception-the process of sensing bodily signals-has gained much interest in recent years, due to its role in physical and mental well-being. Here, we focus on the role of interoception in social connection, which is a relatively new and growing research area. Studies in this area suggest that interoception may help in appraising physiological s...
Article
Full-text available
The componential view of human emotion recognises that affective states comprise conscious, behavioural, physiological, neural and cognitive elements. Although many animals display bodily and behavioural changes consistent with the occurrence of affective states similar to those seen in humans, the question of whether and in which species these are...
Article
Full-text available
Many studies have explored the evaluative effects of vertical (up/down) or horizontal (left/right) spatial locations. However, little is known about the role of information that comes from the front and back. Based on multiple theoretical considerations, we propose that spatial location of sounds is a cue for message valence, such that a message co...
Article
Full-text available
Emotion concepts are important. They help us to understand, experience and predict human behaviour. Emotion concepts also link the realm of the abstract with the realm of bodily experience and actions. Accordingly, the key question is how such concepts are created, represented and used. Embodied cognition theories hold that concepts are grounded in...
Article
Recent evolutionary, cultural, and economic theories have postulated strong connections between human sociality and complex cognition. One prediction derived from this work is that deception should confer cognitive benefits on children. The current research tests this possibility by examining whether learning to deceive during early childhood promo...
Article
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Facial actions are key elements of non-verbal behavior. Perceivers’ reactions to others’ facial expressions often represent a match or mirroring (e.g., they smile to a smile). However, the information conveyed by an expression depends on context. Thus, when shown by an opponent, a smile conveys bad news and evokes frowning. The availability of anth...
Article
Full-text available
Affective stimuli can influence immediate reactions as well as spontaneous behaviors. Much evidence for such influence comes from studies of facial expressions. However, it is unclear whether these effects hold for other affective stimuli, and how the amount of stimulus processing changes the nature of the influence. This paper addresses these issu...
Article
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Facial features that resemble emotional expressions influence key social evaluations, including trust. Here, we present four experiments testing how the impact of such expressive features is qualified by their processing difficulty. We show that faces with mixed expressive features are relatively devalued, and faces with pure expressive features ar...
Article
Stimuli that capture the central tendency of presented exemplars are often preferred-a phenomenon also known as the classic beauty-in-averageness effect. However, recent studies have shown that this effect can reverse under certain conditions. We propose that a key variable for such ugliness-in-averageness effects is the category structure of the p...
Article
It is clear that unreinforced repetition (familiarization) influences affective responses to social stimuli, but its effects on the perception of facial emotion are unknown. Reporting the results of two experiments, we show for the first time that repeated exposure enhances the perceived happiness of facial expressions. In Experiment 1, using a par...
Article
Full-text available
Language and emotions are closely linked. However, previous research suggests that this link is stronger in a native language (L1) than in a second language (L2) that had been learned later in life. The present study investigates whether such reduced emotionality in L2 is reflected in changes in emotional memory and embodied responses to L2 in comp...
Article
Mere exposure (i.e., stimulus repetition) and blending (i.e., stimulus averaging) are classic ways to increase social preferences, including facial attractiveness. In both effects, increases in preference involve enhanced familiarity. Prominent memory theories assume that familiarity depends on a match between the target and similar items in memory...
Article
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Sensorimotor models suggest that understanding the emotional content of a face recruits a simulation process in which a viewer partially reproduces the facial expression in their own sensorimotor system. An important prediction of these models is that disrupting simulation should make emotion recognition more difficult. Here we used electroencephal...
Article
A fundamental and seemingly unbridgeable psychological boundary divides humans and nonhumans. Essentialism theories suggest that mixing these categories violates “natural kinds.” Perceptual theories propose that such mixing creates incompatible cues. Most theories suggest that mixed agents, with both human and nonhuman features, obligatorily elicit...
Article
Full-text available
The tendency to mimic the behaviour of others is affected by a variety of social factors, and it has been argued that such "mirroring" is often unconsciously deployed as a means of increasing affiliation during interpersonal interactions. However, the relationship between automatic motor imitation and status/power is currently unclear. This paper r...
Article
Full-text available
There is a broad theoretical and empirical interest in spontaneous mimicry, or the automatic reproduction of a model’s behavior. Evidence shows that people mimic models they like, and that mimicry enhances liking for the mimic. Yet, there is no satisfactory account of this phenomenon, especially in terms of its functional significance. While affili...
Article
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Individuals that combine features of both genders-gender blends-are sometimes appealing and sometimes not. Heretofore, this difference was explained entirely in terms of sexual selection. In contrast, we propose that part of individuals' preference for gender blends is due to the cognitive effort required to classify them, and that such effort depe...
Data
Summary of multilevel modeling (MLM) results for Study 1 and Study 2. (DOCX)
Data
Alternative analyses on the race-morphing dimension in Study 2. (DOCX)
Chapter
Full-text available
A key task for the field of psychology (and related disciplines) is to identify mechanisms that allow individuals to perceive, understand, influence, and coordinate with others. Within the last decade, imitation has been the focus of many empirical and theoretical discussions, since it is thought to be one such social mechanism. Much of this discus...
Article
Full-text available
There is a lively and theoretically important debate about whether, how, and when embodiment contributes to language comprehension. This study addressed these questions by testing how interference with facial action impacts the brain's real-time response to emotional language. Participants read sentences about positive and negative events (e.g., "S...
Article
Full-text available
Pessoa (2013) makes an impressive case that emotion, motivation, and cognition are neurally intertwined. Our commentary broadens the discussion to the functional, “mind” level. We argue that philosophical and computational considerations justify some modern “separatist” views. We highlight several psychological phenomena that illustrate independenc...
Article
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Understanding others’ actions is essential for functioning in the physical and social world. In the past two decades research has shown that action perception involves the motor system, supporting theories that we understand others’ behavior via embodied motor simulation. Recently, action perception has been facilitated by using well-controlled art...
Article
Full-text available
Niniejsza praca eksploruje procesy emocji i poznania społecznego w kontekście oceniania mimicznej ekspresji emocji. Prezentowane badanie sprawdza, czy poznawczy wysiłek związany z kategoryzacją ekspresji twarzy wpływa na wnioskowanie o czytelność intencji aktora i także na chęć jego bliższego poznania przez obserwatora. Zakładano, że ekspresja emoc...
Article
Full-text available
According to embodied cognition theories, concepts are contextually situated and grounded in neural systems that produce experiential states. This view predicts that processing mental state concepts recruits neural regions associated with different aspects of experience depending on the context in which people understand a concept. This neuroimagin...
Article
Full-text available
Many philosophical approaches hypothesize that one function of consciousness is the creation of a unified subjective experience (Baars, 2005; Bayne, 2010). Such unified experience links different processing streams, originating in separate perceptual modules, thus enabling common access and generation of integrated decisions. All of this presumably...
Article
Facial features influence social evaluations. For example, faces are rated as more attractive and trustworthy when they have more smiling features and also more female features. However, the influence of facial features on evaluations should be qualified by the affective consequences of fluency (cognitive ease) with which such features are processe...
Chapter
Full-text available
• The structure of the chapter is roughly as follows. We begin by contrasting embodiment theories with their main competitors—theories that emphasize the amodal, propositional nature of mental representations. We then review some evidence for embodied processing in more cognitive domains. We then move on to a detailed description of research on emb...
Article
Batty, M., & Taylor, M. J. (2003). Early processing of the six basic facial emotional expressions. Cognitive Brain Research, 17(3), 613-620. Vuilleumier, P., & Pourtois, G. (2007). Distributed and interactive brain mechanisms during emotion face perception: evidence from functional neuroimaging. Neuropsychologia, 45(1), 174-194. Winkielman, P., Ols...
Article
When forming basic social impressions, it is important to quickly and accurately classify facial expressions (including their spontaneity). Early studies on emotion perception, employing static pictures in the chimeric-face paradigm, demonstrated that expressions shown on the left hemi-face (LHF) were rated as more intense, compared to the right he...
Article
Full-text available
Faces are complex visual objects, and faces chosen to vary in 1 regard may unintentionally vary in other ways, particularly if the correlation is a property of the population of faces. Here, we present an example of a correlation that arises from differences in the degree of sexual dimorphism. In Experiment 1, paired similarity ratings were collect...
Article
Full-text available
The concept of mirroring has become rather ubiquitous. One of the most fundamental empirical and theoretical debates within research on mirroring concerns the role of mental representations: While some models argue that higher-order representational mechanisms underpin most cases of mirroring, other models argue that they only moderate a primarily...
Chapter
Full-text available
In this chapter, we first consider the respective roles of unconscious, conscious, and metaconscious processes. We then focus on two topic areas that have revealed the value of a tripartite distinction of consciousness: mind-wandering and awareness of emotions. Last, we consider some future directions in which consideration of the construct of meta...
Article
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Can mouth movements shape attitudes? When people articulate different consonants (e.g., B or K) they press the tongue and the lips against various spots in the mouth. This allows for construction of words that feature systematic wanderings of consonantal stricture spots either from the front to the rear (inward; e.g., BENOKA) or from the rear to th...
Article
The hypothesis of unconscious influences on complex behavior is observationally equivalent to the dissociability of cognition and metacognition (reportability). The target article convincingly argues that evidence for unconscious influence is limited by the quality of the metacognitive measure used. However, it understates the empirical evidence fo...
Article
How do people decide whether a stimulus contains a pattern? One possibility is that they rely on a global, non-specific signal of coherence. Interestingly, this signal might reflect a combination of different stimulus sources. Consequently, the coherence of one stimulus might influence decisions about coherence of a second, unrelated stimulus. We e...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
Facial expressions play an important role in human emotional communication. Observers' reactions to facial expressions can be simple (e.g., smiling to a smile). However, they can also reflect the contextual meaning of an expression (e.g., smiling to an opponent's frown). Our current study provides evidence for contextual modulation of human respons...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
Motor production may play an important role in learning to recognize facial expressions. The present study explores the influence of facial production training on the perception of facial expressions by employing a novel production training intervention built on feedback from automated facial expression recognition. We hypothesized that production...