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Reading emotions and faces

Dr. Elkhonon Goldberg, when discussing different Frontal Lobe, functions in his Wisdom Paradox book, adds that “Executive intelligence” includes “the ability to penetrate other people’s minds, and that starts with an interest in other people’s minds.”

What do we call a window into other people’s emotions? A face.

braintop Paul Ekman has conducted extensive research on identifying emotions through facial expressions. As part of that research, and as part of the power of discipline and training, he learned how to consciously manipulate 42 facial muscles, including many that in most of us are beyond our control, and even awareness.

Based on primary and secondary research, he found that there are seven emotions expressed in the face in universally consistent ways:
– Sadness
– Anger
– Surprise
– Fear
– Enjoyment
– Disgust
– Contempt

Even more interesting: according to his research, feelings and facial expressions influence each other. This is, not only a sad person will naturally look sad, but a person who intentionally smiles will feel more content than a person who doesn’t.

Question: from left to right, top then down, what universal feeling does each face indicate?


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12 Responses

  1. Pat says:

    Anger Fear Surprise
    Contempt Enjoyment Sadness

  2. Alvaro says:

    Very good, Pat!

    Anger Fear Surprise
    Contempt Enjoyment Sadness

  3. Chad W Smith says:

    I think the face you are calling “Contempt” looks more like “Disgust” to me. But the meanings of those words could be considered similar.

    I mean, if I am disgusted by someone or something – then – at that moment – I am viewing them with contempt.

  4. Mitch says:

    anger, fear, surprise
    disgust, enjoyment, contempt

  5. Alex says:

    fury or anger,

    shocked surprise with fear,

    nice surprise or pretend surprise or conveying interest in conversation,

    disgust (she seems to be saying “ewww!”)


    sad but only surface deep sad.

  6. yahobahne says:

    1. anger or contempt
    2. fear
    3. surprise
    4. disgust
    5. enojoyment and
    6. sadness

  7. Aaron says:

    Anger, fear, suprised, disqusted, happy =D, and sad 🙁

  8. Julie says:

    anger, fear, surprise, disgust or contempt,enjoyment, sadness

  9. Susie says:

    I read them as anger, fear, surprise, disgust, enjoyment,and sadness.
    I equate the face that I recognize as disguest with a voice saying, “Ewwww.”

  10. Carlyn Carter says:

    I thought the METT labeled them happiness instead of enjoyment and disgust instead of contempt…

  11. michelle says:

    1. I am so angry
    2. I am completely mortified
    3. I’m pretending to listen but really I am not.
    4. I smell something funny
    5. I am so totally like, bored.

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