- The nonverbal communication of positive emotions: An emotion family approach
- Emotion Review
- Volume | Issue number
- 9 | 3
- Pages (from-to)
- Document type
- Faculty of Social and Behavioural Sciences (FMG)
- Psychology Research Institute (PsyRes)
This review provides an overview of the research on nonverbal expressions of positive emotions, organised into emotion families, that is, clusters sharing common characteristics. Epistemological positive emotions (amusement, relief, awe, and interest) are found to have distinct, recognisable displays via vocal or facial cues, while the agency-approach positive emotions (elation and pride) appear to be associated with recognisable visual, but not auditory, cues. Evidence is less strong for the prosocial emotions (love, compassion, gratitude, and admiration) in any modality other than touch, and there is little support for distinct recognisable signals of the savouring positive emotions (contentment, sensory pleasure, and desire). In closing, some limitations of extant work are noted and some proposals for future research are outlined.
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