Phoebe C. Ellsworth's research while affiliated with University of Michigan and other places

Publications (91)

Article
Full-text available
Two studies were conducted to analyze how individuals feel and express their happiness in shared versus non-shared events. We hypothesized that the Japanese (interdependence-fostering culture), unlike Americans (independence-fostering culture), would show higher levels of happiness in shared situations than in non-shared situations. Study 1: partic...
Article
Full-text available
Research over the past decades has demonstrated the explanatory power of emotions, feelings, motivations, moods, and other affective processes when trying to understand and predict how we think and behave. In this consensus article, we ask: has the increasingly recognized impact of affective phenomena ushered in a new era, the era of affectivism?
Article
Critics have suggested that psychological research is characterized by a pervasive liberal bias, and this problem may be particularly acute in research on issues related to public policy. In this article, I consider the sources of bias in basic and applied research in the evaluation, conduct, and communication of research. Techniques are suggested...
Chapter
In this chapter, we introduce a lay theory approach to study how work passion is attained, as a complement to the scientific theory–driven approach. We provide insight into the lay person’s everyday experience of passion for work, and their beliefs about how passion is achieved, to enhance understanding about what gives rise to passionate workers.
Article
Some thoughts on the nature of networks, the prevalence of emotional experiences, and the importance of new questions.
Article
Full-text available
Researchers are concerned about whether manipulations have the intended effects. Many journals and reviewers view manipulation checks favorably, and they are widely reported in prestigious journals. However, the prototypical manipulation check is a verbal (rather than behavioral) measure that always appears at the same point in the procedure (rathe...
Preprint
Researchers are concerned about whether manipulations have the intended effects. Many journals and reviewers view manipulation checks favorably, and they are widely reported in prestigious journals. However, the prototypical manipulation check is a verbal (rather than behavioral) measure that always appears at the same point in the procedure (rathe...
Article
Envy is a negative state arising when we encounter others with more desirable circumstances than our own. Its converse is pity, a negative state elicited by downward comparisons towards worse-off others. Both classes of emotions first require us to infer what a person's life as a whole must be like. However, the “focusing illusion” suggests these i...
Preprint
Empathy, feeling what others feel, is regarded as a special phenomenon that is separate fromother emotional experiences. Emotion theories say little about feeling emotions for others and empathy theories say little about how feeling emotions for others relates to normal firsthand emotional experience. Current empathy theories focus on how we feel e...
Article
Full-text available
Personal growth is usually considered an outcome of intrapersonal processes—personal resources residing within the person. Comparatively, little research has examined the interpersonal processes underlying personal growth. We investigated how one interpersonal factor—people’s relationships with others—influences personal growth. Study 1 showed that...
Article
‘Mixed emotions’ is often used synonymously with the notion of complex emotional experiences. Emotional complexity can also mean differentiation of emotions, both within and across situations. We review empirical evidence concerning the relationship between various forms of emotional complexity, integrating them in a general conceptual framework. M...
Preprint
“Mixed emotions” is often used synonymously with the notion of complex emotional experiences. Emotional complexity can also mean differentiation of emotions, both within and across situations. We review empirical evidence concerning the relationship between various forms of emotional complexity, integrating them in a general conceptual framework. M...
Article
Full-text available
There is much debate about the notion of emotional complexity (EC). The debate concerns both the definition and the meaning of ostensible cultural differences in the construct. Some scholars have defined EC as the experience of positive and negative emotions together rather than as opposites, a phenomenon that seems more common in East Asia than No...
Article
This article provides a brief introduction to psychological emotion theories, particularly appraisal theory. According to appraisal theory emotions are combinations of a person’s appraisal of the novelty, valence, certainty, goal conduciveness, causal agency, controllability, and morality of a situation. These dimensions correspond to elements of t...
Article
"Passion for work" has become a widespread phrase in popular discourse. Two contradictory lay perspectives have emerged on how passion for work is attained, which we distill into the fit and develop implicit theories. Fit theorists believe that passion for work is achieved through finding the right fit with a line of work; develop theorists believe...
Article
Full-text available
Empathy, feeling what others feel, is regarded as a special phenomenon that is separate from other emotional experiences. Emotion theories say little about feeling emotions for others and empathy theories say little about how feeling emotions for others relates to normal firsthand emotional experience. Current empathy theories focus on how we feel...
Article
Although it is commonly assumed that older people are more cautious and risk averse than their younger counterparts, the research on age differences in risk taking is mixed. While some research has found that older adults are less risk seeking, other research has found the opposite or no differences. One explanation is that age differences vary acr...
Article
This article describes James's distaste for taxonomic classification of emotion and argues that he would not have been pleased by current scholarship which still focuses on the definition and classification of discrete emotions, distracting scholars from more fundamental underlying processes. I argue that as in James's time, current taxonomies are...
Article
William James was not a basic emotion theorist in that he did not propose a list of basic emotions or concern himself with the question of which emotions were really basic. He may have believed that some emotions evolved earlier and spread more widely than others; whether this makes him a basic emotion theorist is a matter of taste.
Article
The comments by Brosch and Sander, de Sousa, Frijda, Kuppens, and Parkinson admirably complement the four main articles, adding layers of complexity, but perhaps at the expense of theoretical parsimony and stringency. Their suggestions are inspiring and heuristic, but we must not forget that science is about testing concrete predictions.
Article
I describe my current thinking on two old questions-the causal role of appraisals and the relationship of appraisal theories to basic emotions theories and constructivist theories, and three (sort of) new questions-the completeness of appraisals, the role of language, and the development of automaticity in emotional responses.
Article
Some individuals have very specific and differentiated emotional experiences, such as anger, shame, excitement, and happiness, whereas others have more general affective experiences of pleasure or discomfort that are not as highly differentiated. Considering that individuals with major depressive disorder (MDD) have cognitive deficits for negative...
Article
Negative events – such as romantic disappointment, social rejection or academic failure – influence how we feel and what we think. Either component can influence evaluations of our past life, but in opposite ways: when sad feelings serve as a source of information, they give rise to negative evaluations; when current events serve as a standard of c...
Article
What people feel shapes their perceptions of others. In the studies reported here, we examined the assimilative influence of visceral states on social judgment. Replicating prior research, we found that participants who were outside during winter overestimated the extent to which other people were bothered by cold (Study 1), and participants who at...
Article
In previous research, the authors showed that Japanese and Americans would rather be asked to perform a favor than to have their friend solve the problem by asking someone else or getting it done professionally. In the current research, the authors further explore the similarities and differences in Japanese and American reactions to requests for f...
Article
Full-text available
This research provides experimental evidence for cultural influence on one of the most basic elements of emotional processing: attention to positive versus negative stimuli. To this end, we focused on Russian culture, which is characterized by brooding and melancholy. In Study 1, Russians spent significantly more time looking at negative than posit...
Article
Appraisal theories of emotion propose that the emotions people experience correspond to their appraisals of their situation. In other words, individual differences in emotional experiences reflect differing interpretations of the situation. We hypothesized that in similar situations, people in individualist and collectivist cultures experience diff...
Chapter
Full-text available
Putrid food, fetid smells, disfiguring diseases, and a variety of bodily products are disgusting. Incest, bestiality, and many moral transgressions are also disgusting. Does disgust refer to a single emotion, or more than one? Theorists disagree. Many researchers have treated disgust more or less as a homogeneous emotion with a set of prototypical...
Article
Full-text available
Many of the qualities that people seek in a long-term partner are not directly observable. As a consequence, information gathered through social learning may be important in partner assessment. Here, we tested the hypothesis that finding out potential partners were rejected by their last partner would negatively affect participants' desire to pursu...
Article
Although robust sex differences are abundant in men and women’s mating psychology, there is a considerable degree of overlap between the two as well. In an effort to understand where and when this overlap exists, the current study provides an exploration of within-sex variation in women’s mate preferences. We hypothesized that women’s intelligence,...
Article
Previous cross-cultural comparisons of correlations between positive and negative emotions found that East Asians are more likely than Americans to feel dialectical emotions. However, not much is known about the co-occurrence of positive and negative emotions in a given situation. When asked to describe situations in which they felt mixed emotions,...
Article
American support for the death penalty has steadily increased since 1966, when opponents outnumbered supporters, and now in the mid-1990s is at a near record high. Research over the last 20 years has tended to confirm the hypothesis that most people's death penalty attitudes (pro or con) are based on emotion rather than information or rational argu...
Article
Full-text available
Past research generally suggests that East Asians tolerate opposing feelings or dialectical emotions more than North Americans. We tested the idea that North Americans would have fewer opposing emotions than East Asians in positive, but not in negative or mixed situations. Forty-seven European American, 40 Chinese, and 121 Japanese students reporte...
Article
Previous research on appraisal theories of emotion has shown that emotions and appraisals are related but has not specified the nature of the relationships. This research examined the functional forms of appraisal-emotion relationships and demonstrated that for all seven appraisals studied, appraisals relate to emotions in an S-shaped (ogival) fash...
Article
In two frequently cited articles, Sommers and Ellsworth (2000, 2001) concluded that the influence of a defendant's race on White mock jurors is more pronounced in interracial trials in which race remains a silent background issue than in trials involving racially charged incidents. Referring to this variable more generally as "race salience," we pr...
Article
Full-text available
Emotions research is now routinely grounded in evolution, but explicit evolutionary analyses of emotions remain rare. This article considers the implications of natural selection for several classic questions about emotions and emotional disorders. Emotions are special modes of operation shaped by natural selection. They adjust multiple response pa...
Chapter
IntroductionPublic Acceptance of Capital Punishment: “Evolving Standards of Decency”Excessiveness of Capital Punishment: The Question of DeterrenceArbitrariness and Discrimination: Capital Punishment in PracticeConclusion: Retribution, Innocence, and Public Opinion
Article
Full-text available
Two studies tested the hypothesis that in judging people's emotions from their facial expressions, Japanese, more than Westerners, incorporate information from the social context. In Study 1, participants viewed cartoons depicting a happy, sad, angry, or neutral person surrounded by other people expressing the same emotion as the central person or...
Article
For more than half a century, emotion researchers have attempted to establish the dimensional space that most economically accounts for similarities and differences in emotional experience. Today, many researchers focus exclusively on two-dimensional models involving valence and arousal. Adopting a theoretically based approach, we show for three la...
Article
According to appraisal theorists, anger involves a negative event, usually blocking a goal, caused by another person. Critics argue that other-agency is unnecessary, since people can be angry at themselves, and thus that appraisal theory is wrong about anger. In two studies, we compared anger, self-anger, shame, and guilt, and found that self-anger...
Article
Confirmation bias is the tendency to bolster a hypothesis by seeking consistent evidence while disregarding inconsistent evidence. In criminal investigations, preference for hypothesis-consistent information could contribute to false convictions by leading investigators to disregard evidence that challenges their theory of a case. Two studies exami...
Article
The social and psychological consequences of being a female law student may include greater stress and worse health than that experienced by male students. First-year law students at a major state university were surveyed about their physical and psychological health prior to, in the middle of, and at the end of the school year. They were also aske...
Article
Full-text available
The experience of an emotion considered to be culturally unique (i.e., Japanese Amae) was tested in the United States, where there is no word to describe the concept. North American and Japanese participants read scenarios in which a friend made an inappropriate request (Amae), made no request, or made the request to another friend. Both American a...
Article
P. Rozin and A. B. Cohen's (2003) method of sending students out to observe each other in familiar circumstances undoubtedly exaggerated the apparent prevalence of confusion, concentration, and worry. The expressions they observed probably ranged from regulatory feedback and communicative signals to expressions of the "intellectual emotions" descri...
Article
Handbook of Research Methods in Social and Personality Psychology, edited by H.T. Reis and C.M. Judd. London: Cambridge University Press, 2000. 558 pp. Cloth, $69.95; paper, $34.95.
Article
Between 1996 and 2001 American support for the death penalty showed a marked decline from the extraordinarily high levels that had persisted over the previous fifteen years. We argue that the falling crime rates of the 1990s were an important enabling condition for this change, but are not sufficient to explain it. Drawing on theory and research in...
Article
Racial prejudice in the courtroom is examined through a historical sketch of racism in the legal system, a review of psychological research on White juror bias, and a study investigating White mock jurors' judgments of a fictional trial summary. The central hypothesis is that salient racial issues at trial activate the normative racial attitudes he...
Chapter
Full-text available
Discusses the thesis of universal contingencies (TUC), the basic cross-cultural thesis of appraisal theories, which states that if people from different cultures appraise a situation in the same way, they will experience the same emotion. The link between appraisal patterns and emotion is universal. The authors discuss 3 hypothesis stemming from th...
Article
Full-text available
Law students report a variety of negative emotional states and indicate that they experience humiliation, a lack of control, and isolation during their legal training. However, it is unclear whether their distress increases after entry into law school, and how their levels of distress compare to other populations. We collected self-report data on a...
Article
The present studies compare the judgments of White and Black mock jurors in interracial trials. In Study 1, the defendant's race did not influence White college students' decisions but Black stu- dents demonstrated ingroup/outgroup bias in their guilt ratings and attributions for the defendant's behavior. The aversive nature of modern racism sugges...
Article
Laypersons, the media, and many legal scholars tend to attribute problems in the jury system to the dispositions of individual jurors and to recommend reforms in jury selection procedures and relaxation of the unanimity rule. Social scientists view problems as a consequence of the structure of the jurors' task and recommend reforms in trial procedu...
Article
Three vignette studies examined stereotypes of the emotions associated with high- and low-status group members. In Study 1a, participants believed that in negative situations, high-status people feel more angry than sad or guilty and that low-status people feel more sad and guilty than angry. Study 1b showed that in response to positive outcomes, h...
Article
Full-text available
Three vignette studies examined stereotypes of the emotions associated with high- and low-status group members. In Study 1a, Ss (mean age 24 yrs) believed that in negative situations, high-status people feel more angry than sad or guilty and that low-status people feel more sad and guilty than angry. Study 1b showed that in response to positive out...
Article
Comments on the article by R. Hastie et al (see record 1998-04034-003 ) and N. Vidmar's (see record 1999-15875-006 ) critique of the Hastie et al study that examined civil juries' decisions concerning defendants' liability for punitive damages in court cases and whether jurors' demographic characteristics predict their verdicts. The current author...
Article
Full-text available
The authors argue that individuals regulate perceptions of their relationships in a self-protective way, finding virtue in their partners only when they feel confident that their partners also see virtues in them. In 4 experiments, the authors posed an acute threat to low and high self-esteem individuals' feelings of self-worth (e.g., guilt about a...
Article
A common procedure for assessing the fairness of a lineup is to give a verbal description of the perpetrator to people who did not witness the incident and ask them to select the likely perpetrator from the lineup. If people who never saw the perpetrator nonetheless make the "right choice" significantly more often than chance, the implication is th...
Article
A common procedure for assessing the fairness of a lineup is to give a verbal description of the perpetrator to people who did not witness the incident and ask them to select the likely perpetrator from the lineup. If people who never saw the perpetrator nonetheless make the "right choice" significantly more often than chance, the implication is th...
Article
During his lifetime William James's complex ideas about emotion were oversimplified to the point of caricature, and for the next half century scientific research on emotion was driven by the oversimplified version--by the idea that emotions are merely the sensation of bodily changes. In fact, the interpretation of the stimulus was an essential feat...
Article
Full-text available
Comments on a recent attack on the use of psychological experts in eyewitness testimony by R. Elliott (see record 1994-03914-001). Elliott's attack was based on a survey of 63 eyewitness experts conducted by S. M. Kassin et al (see record 1989-39825-001). It is argued that Elliott's attack has 2 principal shortcomings: (1) it misrepresents the eyew...
Article
Full-text available
Echoing McCloskey and Egeth (1983), and motivated by Kassin, Ellsworth, and Smith's (1989) survey of 63 eyewitness experts, Elliott (1993) recently attacked the use of psychological experts on eyewitness testimony. There are two principal shortcomings of this critique articulated in this paper.
Article
In keeping with cognitive appraisal models of emotion, it was hypothesized that sadness and anger would exert different influences on causal judgments. Two experiments provided initial support for this hypothesis. Sad Ss perceived situationally caused events as more likely (Experiment 1) and situational forces more responsible for an ambiguous even...
Article
The showup, or presentation of a single suspect to an eyewitness, is widely believed to be a more biased and suggestive identification procedure than the lineup even though there has been no empirical work on this issue. Results suggest, however, that witnesses at a lineup are less likely to say "not there" than are witnesses at a showup. This tend...
Article
Full-text available
A survey of 224 Michigan citizens called for jury duty over a 2-month period was conducted to assess the jurors' comprehension of the law they had been given in the judges' instructions. Citizens who served as jurors were compared with a base line of those who were called for duty but not selected to serve, and with those who served on different ki...
Article
The evidence that death-qualified jurors are more likely than excluded jurors to convict is consistent, robust, and directly relevant to the issues of representativeness and conviction proneness that were before the Supreme Court in Lockhart v. McCree . There are exactly the circumstances in which an amicus brief from the APA is most appropriate. I...
Article
Full-text available
Sixty-three experts on eyewitness testimony were surveyed about their courtroom experiences and opinions on various issues. There was a strong consensus indicated by an agreement rate of at least 80% that the data on the following topics are reliable enough to present in court: the wording of questions, lineup instructions, misleading postevent inf...
Article
Previous researchers using between-subjects comparisons have found eyewitness confidence and accuracy to be only negligibly correlated. In this study, we examined the predictive power of confidence in within-subject terms. Ninety-six subjects answered, and made confidence ratings for, a series of questions about a crime they witnessed. The average...
Article
Full-text available
Previous researchers using between-subjects comparisons have found eyewitness confidence and accuracy to be only negligibly correlated. In this study, we examined the predictive power of confidence in within-subject terms. Ninety-six subjects answered, and made confidence ratings for, a series of questions about a crime they witnessed. The average...
Article
Full-text available
Pleasant experience appears to be less emotionally differentiated than unpleasant experience. For instance, theories of emotion typically posit the existence of six or seven unpleasant emotions but often posit only one or two pleasant emotions. The present study is an attempt to systematically examine the differentiation of pleasant emotional exper...
Article
Full-text available
Recent research has indicated strong relations between people's appraisals of their circumstances and their emotional states. The present study examined these relations across a range of unpleasant situations in which subjects experienced complex emotional blends. Subjects recalled unpleasant experiences from their pasts that were associated with p...
Article
In two studies we examined the effect of questioner expertise on the error rates of subjects who were asked misleading versus unbiased questions. A total of 105 introductory psychology students watched a videotaped clip of a bank robbery and were then questioned about the crime. The questioner was represented to subjects as either highly knowledgea...
Article
In two studies we examined the effect of questioner expertise on the error rates of subjects who were asked misleading versus unbiased questions. A total of 105 introductory psychology students watched a videotaped clip of a bank robbery and were then questioned about the crime. The questioner was represented to subjects as either highly knowledgea...
Article
Full-text available
Recent research has suggested strong relations between characteristic patterns of appraisal along emotionally relevant dimensions and the experience of specific emotions. However, this work has relied primarily upon ratings of remembered or imagined past events associated with the experience of relatively pure emotions. The present investigation is...
Article
Full-text available
There has long been interest in describing emotional experience in terms of underlying dimensions, but traditionally only two dimensions, pleasantness and arousal, have been reliably found. The reasons for these findings are reviewed, and integrating this review with two recent theories of emotions (Roseman, 1984; Scherer, 1982), we propose eight c...
Article
Two studies examined why attitudes toward the death penalty are consistently predictive of jurors' verdicts in criminal trials. In Study 1, 36 eligible jurors viewed a videotape showing conflicting testimony by a prosecution and defense witness in an assault case. Death-qualified Ss (those permitted to serve on capital juries) interpreted testimony...
Article
This study provides a straightforward test of the proposition that people who are permitted to serve on juries in capital cases (death-qualified jurors) are more likely to convict a defendant than are people who are excluded from serving on capital juries due to their unwillingness to impose the death penalty (excludable jurors). A sample of 288 su...
Article
We predicted that people who are excluded from serving on juries in capital cases due to their opposition to the death penalty (excludable subjects) tend to place a greater value on the preservation of due process guarantees than on efficient crime control, and therefore are more likely to accept an insanity defense in criminal cases than are peopl...
Article
Juries that exclude individuals who are unwilling to impose the death penalty (death-qualified juries) may be biased against capital defendants. To evaluate this possibility, the present authors compared the demographic characterstics and attitudes toward the criminal justice justice system of people who would or would not be excluded by the (Withe...
Article
A survey designed to examine the attitudinal and informational bases of people's opinions about the death penalty was administered to 500 Northern California residents (response rate = 96 percent). Of these, 58.8 percent were proponents of capital punishment, 30.8 percent were opponents, and 10.4 percent were undecided. When asked whether they favo...

Citations

... Although this appears to be known in the clinical field, we believe that a broader and more public awareness of this issue and its background can lead to constructive problem-solving approaches. In a general and interdisciplinary sense, this work with its theoretical background and technical realisation attempts to contribute in trying to understand and predict how we think and behave, in the spirit of "the rise of affectivism" [13]. First, we review the connection between facial behaviour and the psychiatric field. ...
... In contrast, working adults who endorsed the fit mindset (over the develop mindset) expected their passion toward a job to remain high over time, hence they tended to prioritize immediate enjoyment over other vocational characteristics when choosing a job. Both the develop and fit mindsets significantly predicted people's self-reported vocational passion, satisfaction, and commitment toward their vocationsindicating that people with either dominant mindset are able to achieve passion toward their work, just through different means (Chen and Ellsworth, 2019). ...
... Besides the previous meaning, metaemotion can also refer to the "affective reactions toward the primary emotion, and motivation to change the expected course of the primary emotion" (Bartsch et al., 2008, p. 16). Our hypothesis is that the explicit assessment of emotions will differently modulate or exacerbate the physiological responses according to the actual affective state (Hauser et al., 2018), mainly under high arousal or negative valence emotions (Kassam & Mendes, 2013). ...
... Because it is infeasible to manipulate the actual number of discretionary and non-discretionary hours individuals typically have in their day-to-day lives, we relied on a mental simulation manipulation that required participants to vividly imagine and describe having a given number of discretionary hours every day for an extended period of their lives. This mental simulation approach helped ensure that participants considered the nuanced and actual experience of being in that situation, rather than reporting based on their superficial assumptions (Morewedge, Huh, & Vosgerau, 2010;O'Brien, Kristal, Ellsworth, & Schwarz, 2018). ...
... These brief interactions with a wide range of relationship partners are associated with positive psychological outcomes, including increased social and emotional well-being (Sandstrom & Dunn, 2014a, 2014b, protection from stressful events (Cohen & Wills, 1985) and anxiety (Gump & Kulik, 1997), personal growth (Lee et al., 2018) and increased cognitive functioning (Granovetter, 1973;Lee et al., 2018). However, beyond opportune moments of social connection which are vital for well-being, people are often left disconnected from friends and acquaintances with whom they typically have pleasant interactions, if neither party takes the initiative to connect. ...
... At the same time, some of the aforementioned terms do not exclusively refer to experiences of simultaneous positive and negative emotion. For example, emotional complexity is a multifaceted construct: Many studies examining emotional complexity do not capture simultaneous positive and negative emotion but rather are focused on emotional differentiation or granularity (see Grossmann & Ellsworth, 2017;Grossmann et al., 2016). Thus, research on emotional complexity is not always directly relevant to mixed emotions. ...
... Some studies have found evidence for position effects in the simultaneous lineup (see Gonzalez, Davis, & Ellsworth, 1995;Sporer, 1993), but more attention needs to be devoted to the effects of ordering in the sequential lineup. Lindsay and Wells (1985;see also Sporer, 1993) reported no effect of where the suspect was placed in the sequential lineup. ...
... The law school climate is widely criticized as being detrimental to students (Dammeyer & Nunez, 1999), and there are numerous descriptions of the stressors in law school (Benjamin, Kasniak, Sales, & Shanfield, 1986;Iijima, 1998;McIntosh, Keywell, Reifman, & Ellsworth, 1994;Segerstrom, 1996;Sheehy & Horan, 2004). While these studies are critical of the law school climate, they have not investigated if and how law school actually impacts students. ...
... This research examined whether priming very young children with a specific positive emotion, either pride or joy, enhances their pursuit of the goal associated with that emotion in a subsequent delay of gratification (DoG) challenge. Both pride and joy are ''benefit-related" emotions in