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The Science of Social Vision$
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Reginald B. Adams, Nalini Ambady, Ken Nakayama, and Shinsuke Shimojo

Print publication date: 2010

Print ISBN-13: 9780195333176

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: January 2011

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195333176.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM OXFORD SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (oxford.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Oxford University Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in OSO for personal use. date: 29 November 2021

An Ecological Theory of Face Perception

An Ecological Theory of Face Perception

(p.3) Chapter 1 An Ecological Theory of Face Perception
The Science of Social Vision

Leslie A. Zebrowitz

P. Matthew Bronstad

Joann M. Montepare

Oxford University Press

This chapter presents an ecological theory of face perception, which draws on a Gibsonian approach to perception. This theory is offered not as a hypothetico-deductive framework, but rather as a general conceptual model that can integrate existing research findings and guide future research questions. It adds to the dual process and face-space models by expanding the attributes perceived in faces, emphasizing the function of face perception to guide adaptive behavior, predicting face perceptions from the overgeneralization of adaptive responses, highlighting dynamic and multimodal cues to face perceptions, and considering the perceiver attunements that moderate face perceptions. The chapter reviews the tenets of the ecological theory of face perception and considers how they inform the perception of four significant facial qualities: familiarity, age, emotion, and attractiveness. It also considers how ostensibly separate domains of face perception may be integrated through the ecological concept of perceived affordances.

Keywords:   face perception, face-space models, ecological theory, affordances, adaptive responses

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