Asymmetry of Facial Expressions of Emotion

  • Elizabeth M. Murray
  • William H. Krause
  • Remington J. Stafford
  • Amanda D. Bono
  • Erica P. Meltzer
  • Joan C. Borod


The purpose of this chapter is to review the various theories of facial emotion lateralization and to provide an examination of the research conducted to date that addresses these theories, drawing upon evidence primarily from behavioral and lesion studies. The chapter focuses on human research, but studies from primates are also considered. The lateralization of facial emotion is discussed in terms of demographic factors (e.g., age and gender), valence (i.e., positive or negative emotions), and elicitation procedure (i.e., posed vs. spontaneous). The chapter evaluates theories pertaining to hemispheric specialization (e.g., the valence hypothesis) and location-specific differences (e.g., upper vs. lower face) during facial emotional expression. Finally, the chapter concludes with suggestions about directions for future research.


Facial expressions Emotions Laterality 



This work was supported, in part, by Professional Staff Congress—CUNY Research Award nos. 64429-0042, 65431-0043, and 67383-0045 to Queens College.


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Copyright information

© Springer India 2015

Authors and Affiliations

  • Elizabeth M. Murray
    • 1
    • 2
  • William H. Krause
    • 1
    • 2
  • Remington J. Stafford
    • 1
  • Amanda D. Bono
    • 1
    • 2
  • Erica P. Meltzer
    • 1
    • 2
  • Joan C. Borod
    • 1
    • 2
    • 3
  1. 1.Psychology DepartmentQueens College of the City University of New York (CUNY)FlushingUSA
  2. 2.Psychology DepartmentThe Graduate Center of CUNYNew YorkUSA
  3. 3.Neurology DepartmentIcahn School of Medicine at Mount SinaiNew YorkUSA

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