Saturday, February 27, 2010

wanted to post this section of an article I was reading today:
The effects of cultural exposure on neural activation have also been found in the areas of emotion recognition and inferences of intentions. Neural responses to emotional expressions in Japanese and Caucasian faces by native Japanese participants in Japan and Caucasian participants in the United States were examined by Chiao et al. (2008). Distinct neural responses were found in response to ingroup members, with individuals from both cultures showing greater amygdala activation to faces expressing fear of members of their own cultural groups. Moreover, Moriguchi et al. (2005) also found activation to Japanese fear expressions in emotion-related areas of the brain in Caucasians who had lived in Japan for more than a year. These two studies suggest that exposure to a culture can affect neural responses to emotional expressions. In another study, the ability to infer intentions was evaluated from a “reading the mind in the eyes” task used in studies examining the ability to infer intentions and feelings from pictures of the eyes. This task agrees with traditional tests of theory of mind and has been demonstrated to reliably differentiate between nonclinical samples and populations exhibiting psychopathologic disorders marked by impaired theory of mind (Baron-Cohen, Wheelwright, Hill, Raste, & Plumb, 2001). Japanese participants showed more activation in the superior temporal sulcus (STS), an area found to be activated in previous neuroimaging studies examining inferences of intentions, when they were judging the intentions of Japanese as compared to American targets from pictures of their eyes. Americans participants showed the opposite pattern, with more STS activation when judging intentions from Caucasian as compared to Japanese eyes (Adams et al., 2009). Thus, there seem to be selective neural responses to cultural ingroup faces, probably due to more exposure to these faces.
here is the link to the full text:

I often quote Schumann saying something to the effect that psychological behaviors we see and categorize may or may not have neurological representations, and therefore we should be cautious about concluding the absolute veracity of our psychological interpretations, while I simultaneously go about making psychological interpretations :).

it is nice to find this article that seems to support my psychological conclusions on a neurological level! will reference this one (and since I have all the authors' references with links, I hope to read and reference others) in the paper.

Monday, February 8, 2010

final themes (really, I mean it this time!)

I spent the morning revising the themes/codes. this is the final time, I think. but I plan to completely recode the four transcripts, so I could be fooling myself :).

anyway, here they are:

Theme 1. How did they interpret emotion meaning(s)?
  • Theme 1.1 [They can’t explain why they “see” the emotion]
  • Theme 1.2 [They use a circular definition]
  • Theme 1.3 [They use situational interpretation]
    • Theme 1.3.1 [Interpretation based on situation in film]
    • Theme 1.3.2 [“Reverse” situational interpretation]
  • Theme 1.4 [They use a behavioral/paralinguistic interpretation]
  • Theme 1.5 [They use a lexical interpretation]
  • Theme 1.6 [They use a combination of interpretations] [situational and paralinguistic cues used]
  • Theme 1.7 [side note: They use an interpretation embedded in character assessment]. [ie. emotion=characteristic/temperament]

Theme 2. How did scripts play a role?
  • Theme 2.1 [Participants recognize the importance of scripts]
  • Theme 2.2.1 [Scripts get referenced in proverbs and sayings]
    • Theme 2.1.2 [Scripts get referenced in archetypes]
    • Theme 2.1.3 [Scripts are gendered].
    • Theme 2.1.4 [Scripts can be embedded in certain culturally emotional acts (e.g. “doing noonchi”)]
    • Theme 2.1.5 [Scripts can respond to emotional temperament]
  • Theme 2.2 [Scripts may require contradictory, masked, or diminished emotional expressions].
  • Theme 2.3 [When script is not followed, that creates cognitive dissonance].
    • Theme 2.3.1 [Cases of behavior seen dominantly]
    • Theme 2.3.2 [Cases where situational appraisal is seen dominantly]
  • Theme 2.4 [How do non-natives interpret the scripts of the other]
    • Theme 2.4.1 [Non-natives interpret the script accurately]
    • Theme 2.4.2 [Non-natives interpret the script inaccurately]
    • Theme 2.4.3 [Non-natives interpret the script with partial accuracy!]

Theme 3 How did the focus groups show the social construction of emotional interpretation?
  • Theme 3.1 [Participants persuading one another to change their opinion]
  • Theme 3.2 [Multiple/complex emotions likely to be “sussed” and discussed]
  • Theme 3.3 [The process of “sussing out” the other’s cultural script requires group consideration].

Theme 4 What are the implications for teaching discussed by participants?
  • Theme 4.1 [Are movies real?]
    • 4.1.1 Movie depictions can accurately represent real life
    • 4.1.2 But movie depictions may not be universal
    • 4.1.3 Cinema and cinematic effects affect emotional interpretations.
  • Theme 4.2 [Questions of linguistics, like language register, diction, and profanity differences may be more important for FL learners].
  • Theme 4.3 [FL education’s focus on translation]

Monday, February 1, 2010


I cannot get any time to work on the dissertation. I have been trapped by revisions on the wiki paper. who knew there were so many different non-parametric statistics?

only one more day on this--less, I hope.