This study examined the influence of sad mood on the judgment of ambiguous facial emotion expressions among 47 healthy volunteers who had been induced to feel sad (n = 13), neutral (n = 15), or happy (n = 19) emotions by watching video clips. The findings suggest that when the targets were ambiguous, participants who were in a sad mood tended to classify them in the negative emotional categories rather than the positive emotional categories. Also, this observation indicates that emotion-specific negative bias in the judgment of facial expressions is associated with a sad mood. The finding argues against a general impairment in decoding facial expressions. Furthermore, the observed mood-congruent negative bias was best predicted by spatial perception. The findings of this study provide insights into the cognitive processes underlying the interpersonal difficulties experienced by people in a sad mood, which may be predisposing factors in the development of clinical depression. Copyright © 2007 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.
CitationLee, T. M. C., Ng, E. H. H., Tang, S. W., & Chan, C. C. H. (2008). Effects of sad mood on facial emotion recognition in Chinese people. Psychiatry Research, 159(1-2), 37-43. doi: 10.1016/j.psychres.2007.04.022
- Depressed mood
- Facial emotion
- Facial expressions