Customer Service | Help | FAQ | PEP-Easy | Report a Data Error | About
Tip: To refine search by publication year…

PEP-Web Tip of the Day

Having problems finding an article? Writing the year of its publication in Search for Words or Phrases in Context will help narrow your search.

For the complete list of tips, see PEP-Web Tips on the PEP-Web support page.

Sonnby-Borgström, M. (2009). Alexithymia as Related to Facial Imitation, Mentalization, Empathy, and Internal Working Models-of-Self and -Others. Neuropsychoanalysis, 11(1):111-128.

(2009). Neuropsychoanalysis, 11(1):111-128

Original Article

Alexithymia as Related to Facial Imitation, Mentalization, Empathy, and Internal Working Models-of-Self and -Others

Marianne Sonnby-Borgström

The study investigated alexithymia in relation to facial imitation, empathy, attachment (models-of-self and -others), and reported emotional contagion and the degree of correspondence between facial responses (somatic affect) and reported emotional contagion (mentalization of affects). Pictures of angry, happy, and sad faces were presented to 102 participants at exposure times from subliminal (17-23 ms) to clearly supraliminal (2,500 ms). Electromyographic (EMG) activity from the corrugator and zygomaticus muscles was measured, and emotional contagion was reported after exposures. Self-report questionnaires measured alexithymia (TAS-20), attachment (RSQ), and empathy (IRI). Alexithymia correlated negatively with models-of-self (p < .01) and models-of-others (p < .0001), with a marginally significant correlation with empathy (p = .06). An interaction (p < .05) was found between alexithymia and facial expression with corrugator response as dependent measure, indicating corrugator imitation only for the low-alexithymia participants. The low-alexithymia group's facial responses corresponded with their verbal reports, when exposed to both negative and positive faces at the longest exposure. The high-alexithymia participants showed correspondences when exposed to happy facial expressions at shorter exposures.

[This is a summary or excerpt from the full text of the book or article. The full text of the document is available to subscribers.]

Copyright © 2020, Psychoanalytic Electronic Publishing, ISSN 2472-6982 Customer Service | Help | FAQ | Download PEP Bibliography | Report a Data Error | About

WARNING! This text is printed for personal use. It is copyright to the journal in which it originally appeared. It is illegal to redistribute it in any form.