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date: 25 October 2020

Abstract and Keywords

This article reviews recent investigations of three familiar naturalistic contexts in which facial expressions are frequently encountered: whole bodies, natural scenes, and emotional voices. It briefly reviews recent evidence that shifts the emphasis from a categorical model of face processing, based on the assumption that faces are processed as a distinct object category with their dedicated perceptual and neurofunctional basis, towards more distributed models where different aspects of faces are processed by different brain areas and different perceptual routines and shows how these models are better suited to represent face perception and face-context effects. This study details one kind of context effect, which is found in investigations of interactions between facial and bodily expressions. It sketches a perspective in which context plays a crucial role, even for highly automated processes like the ones underlying recognition of facial expressions. Some recent evidence of context effects also has implications for current theories of face perception and its deficits.

Keywords: real faces, real emotions, facial expressions, voices, bodies, scenes, whole bodies, natural scenes, emotional voices, facial expressions, face-context effects

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