How people react emotionally to an event can tell us much about the event itself. However, emotions vary in their situative informativeness, that is, in how much information about the situation they provide. We predicted that when emotions are shown that are low in situative informativeness participants rely more on context information, then when the emotions shown are high in situative informativeness. This hypothesis was tested in 2 studies in which participants were asked to evaluate the quality of a player's performance based on the emotional reactions of spectators to an unknown ball game. Spectators reacted either with awe (high in situative informativeness), or with happiness or neutrality (low in situative informativeness). Participant also received context information. The findings supported the predictions and illustrate how emotions and context interact to inform us about events.
Bibliographical notePublisher Copyright:
© 2018 American Psychological Association.
- Situative informativeness
- social perception
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Psychology (all)