Person Perception What’s in a Face? Who or What are You?
Lectures 1 & 2:Person Perception Macrae, C.N., & Bodenhausen, G.V. (2000). Social Cognition: Thinking categorically about others. Annual Review of Psychology, 51, 93-120. Palermo, R., & Rhodes, G. (2007). Are you always on my mind? A review of how face perception and attention interact. Neuropsychologia, 45, 75-92. Tarr M.J., & Cheng, Y.D. (2002). Learning to see faces and objects. Trends in Cognitive Sciences, 7, 23-30. Lecture 1 – Face Perception (Background and Basics) Lecture 2 – Person Categorization
Is Face Processing Innate? • Goren, Sarty, & Wu (1975) showed that new born infants (with an average age of 9 minutes) track schematic face-like patterns more than control patterns with the same features rearranged - see also Dziurawiec & Ellis (1986) • human infants may come equipped with knowledge of faces (i.e., roughly what do faces look like)
Recognizing Family Members • person recognition develops in the first 7 months of life - Sai & Bushnell (1988) report that 1-month olds can discriminate between the face of their mother and a stranger. • Bushnell et al. (1989) - two day olds can perform the above discrimination. • hair cues (12-month olds cannot discriminate face of mother and stranger if the hair region is concealed with a bathing cap - Bushnell, 1982).
Face Cues:Extracting Person Knowledge • Invariant knowledge – identity, sex, race. • Variable knowledge - expression, emotional status, direction of attention. • Static vs. Dynamic Cues • Complex processing conditions
Face Processing Models • Bruce & Young (1986) Model basic assumption – information is extracted from faces via two distinct processing routes: (i) identity route (ii) expression/sex/age/gaze route • behavioral, patient, imaging evidence
Face Processing:Cognitive and Neural Components Bruce & Young (1986) Haxby et al., (2000)
Identifying People • what makes a person recognizable? features vs. configurations (part-based vs. holistic processing (importance of configural information)
A Face of Two Halves • Young et al (1987) made new composite faces from the top halves and bottom halves different famous faces. When the two halves of the composite were closely aligned, to form a new face, subjects found it very difficult to name the top halves. When the two halves were misaligned, subjects were much quicker to name the top halves
Disrupting Configural Processing • Face identification relies on configural information. Recognition is impaired when faces are inverted (i.e., featural processing dominates - Young et al., 1988)
Expertise and Configural Processing • Diamond and Carey (1986) showed that recognition of individual members of a breed of dogs by expert breeders was as disrupted by inversion as was face recognition (thus, dog breeders relied on configural processing to identify individual dogs)
Importance of Facial Configuration • the importance of the overall configuration of the face can help us understand why face recognition can be remarkably robust despite a variety of natural (change in expression, orientation etc) as well as unnatural (cartoons) transformations in faces.
Recognizing Caricatures • caricatures can be more recognizable than line drawings of the same faces (Rhodes et al., 1987). Caricatures are effective because they exaggerate the relationship between the component facial features
Critical Issues • Is there anything special about the stimulus category faces or are they just like any other class of objects? • Hay and Young (1982) uniqueness - are the perceptual and cognitive processes used for recognizing faces different in nature from those used to process other classes of information? specificity - are the processes involved in face recognition, irrespective of their nature, organized into a separate system that deals only with faces?
Evidence for Cognitive Distinctiveness • complexity - face recognition among our greatest accomplishments (we learn 1000s of faces) • own-race bias (Bothwell et al., 1989) recognition for Black/White faces among Black/White participants own-race bias (configural vs. featural processing) evolution of a special face processing system
Configural Information • faces are special because of their reliance on configural information inverted faces and other-race faces disrupt configural processing but remember the dog experts!
Evidence Relating to Neural Distinctiveness • Single-Cell Recording single neurons in the superior temporal sulcus (STS) that are selectively responsive to faces. • Gross (1992) showed that the cells that are sensitive to face stimuli do not respond to other complex visual patterns (e.g., hands). • Perrett et al. (1988) have demonstrated that certain cells in STS are tuned to the face of a particular known individual.
Further Evidence for Neural Distinctiveness • lateralization - patients with unilateral lesions - normal participants - visual half-field procedures - right hemisphere is dominant for face perception (e.g., prosopagnosia)
Still Further Evidence for Neural Distinctiveness • aetology & anatomy face processing disorders emerge in a wide range of patient populations - dementia (Hodges et al., 1993) - closed head injury (De Haan & Campbell, 1992) - autistic patients (Teunisse & De Gelder, 1994)
Yet Further Evidence for Neural Distinctiveness • functional imaging recent PET/fMRI investigations have identified a number of areas involved in the processing of familiar faces in the posterior, occipito-temporal areas of the brain, the fusiform gyrus - especially in the right hemisphere. • fusiform face area (FFA) responds selectively to faces specific face processing system
Fusiform Face Area (FFA) • functional brain imaging investigations of the normal human brain show that a region in the fusiform gyrus is not only activated when subjects view faces, but is activated twice as strongly for faces as for a wide range of non-face stimuli (Kanwisher et al., 1997)
Is the Fusiform Gyrus a Face-Specific Region? • domain generality - discriminating between perceptually similar objects - are we simply experts at faces? - might the putative face-specific mechanisms be specialized for making any discriminations for which we have gained expertise (remember the dog breeders and the effects of inversion)?
Activating Expertise • When bird experts and car experts were scanned while viewing birds, cars, faces, and objects, the activity in the face-selective region of the of fusiform gyrus is weakest during the viewing of assorted objects, next strongest for the non-expert category, stronger yet for the expert category, and strongest for faces (Gauthier et al., 2000)
Summary Things Worth Knowing Components of Face Processing (i.e., featural vs. configural information) Are Faces Special? Next Week 1. Person Categorization
Two Routes to Person Understanding • person categorization categorical thinking generic knowledge (stereotypes) fast, efficient, thoughtless • person individuation unique persons idiosyncratic attributes slow, effortful, thoughtful individuation categorization
Allport’s Assumption:The Dominance of Categorical Thinking “we like to solve problems easily. We can do so best if we can fit them rapidly into a satisfactory category and use this category as a means of prejudging the solution…So long as we can get away with course overgeneralizations we tend to do so. Why? Well, it takes less effort, and effort, except in the area of our most intense interests, is disagreeable.” (1954, pp. 20-21)
Two Views of Jim • ‘individuated’ Jim • ‘categorical’ Jim
Opening the Social-Cognitive Toolbox:The Power of Categorical Thinking • reported effects in the literature memories impressions actions attentional preservation • but something’s missing people & perception target registration
Origins of Categorical Thinking:Relocating the ‘Person’ in Person Perception • cognitive economy primary cause or useful consequence • social-cognitive processing stream exploiting the products of perceptual operations • ease of knowledge extraction categorical vs. identity-based
Schematic Model of Person Construal categorization ???? category-based processing identification person-based processing memories impressions actions
Extracting Categorical Knowledge From a Face:Is it Easy? • what or who do you see? category vs. identity • sources of facial information featural vs. configural • sub-optimal conditions orientation degradation presentation