The perception and attribution of facial asymmetry in normal adults

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This study examined the effect of a target person's facial asymmetry on observers' attributions of emotion and personality, as well as appearance judgment. The first experiment investigated attributions to resting asymmetrical faces of 20 normal healthy young adults versus their symmetrical hemifacial composites. The second experiment used the same procedure with 24 expressive faces. The findings of no significant differences between the attributions to asymmetrical faces and their symmetrical hemifacial composites in both studies are explained by the very limited degree of asymmetry seen on young adults' faces. Moreover, it is suggested that observers are not tuned to notice mild facial symmetry, and thus it does not affect attributions. As a whole, the study indicates that nonpathological facial asymmetry does not play an important role in human interaction.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)371-384
Number of pages14
JournalPsychological Record
Issue number3
StatePublished - 1997
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Arts and Humanities (miscellaneous)
  • General Psychology


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