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Fear, but not fear-relevance, modulates reaction times in visual search with animal distractors
Karolinska Institute, Department of Clinical Neurosciences, Section of Psychology, Stockholm, Sweden.
ISCTE, Department of Social and Organizational Psychology, Lisbon, Portugal.
University of Gävle, Department of Education and Psychology, Ämnesavdelningen för psykologi.
2009 (English)In: Journal of Anxiety Disorders, ISSN 0887-6185, E-ISSN 1873-7897, Vol. 23, no 1, p. 136-144Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

The research aimed at examining attentional selectivity in a visual search paradigm using pictures of animals that have provided a recurrent threat in an evolutionary perspective (i.e., snakes and spiders) and pictures of animals that have supposedly posed no such threat (i.e., cats and fish). Experiment 1 showed no advantage of fear-relevant stimuli over non-fear-relevant animal stimuli. However, an attentional capture seemed to emerge as a delay in the disengagement of attention, specifically when there was a massive presentation of fear-relevant stimuli in the array. The results from Experiment 2, where participants were selected based specifically on their fear of either snakes or spiders (but not both), showed a preferential processing of the congruent feared stimulus, when compared with non fearful participants, which strengthens the notion that fear significance may be an important factor drawing attention to a particular spatial location.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2009. Vol. 23, no 1, p. 136-144
Keywords [en]
Animal fear; Attentional capture; Visual search
National Category
Psychology
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:hig:diva-1691DOI: 10.1016/j.janxdis.2008.05.002ISI: 000262760400018PubMedID: 18565724Scopus ID: 2-s2.0-57349173926OAI: oai:DiVA.org:hig-1691DiVA, id: diva2:118353
Available from: 2008-05-15 Created: 2008-05-15 Last updated: 2018-03-13Bibliographically approved

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Flykt, Anders

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CiteExportLink to record
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