Itsy Bitsy Spider? It Depends…

Tali Leibovich, Noga Cohen, Avishai Henik

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


You have probably heard it before. “The bug was huge!” (said your friend who is afraid of bugs), or “The needle was so big!” (said another friend who is afraid of shots). Can such statements be more than just figures of speech? We asked if fear could change the way people estimate size. To answer that question, we asked people who were afraid of spiders, and people who were not, to estimate the size of pictures of spiders and other animals. We also asked how unpleasant each picture was to look at. People who were afraid of spiders estimated spider size to be larger than did people who were not afraid of spiders. This result shows that our emotions can affect the way we evaluate the size of things around us. In other words, each of us experiences the world in our own special way.
Original languageEnglish
Article number29
Pages (from-to)1-7
Number of pages7
JournalFrontiers for Young Minds
StatePublished - 22 Dec 2016
Externally publishedYes


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