Face adaptation in an isolated population of African hunter-gatherers: Exposure influences perception of other-ethnicity faces more than own-ethnicity faces

Anthony C. Little, Coren L. Apicella

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

1 Citation (Scopus)

Abstract

Previous experiments have demonstrated that exposure to faces can change the perception of normality in new faces, such that faces similar to those at exposure appear more normal. Here we examined how experience influences adaptation effects in African Hadza hunter-gatherers, who have limited experience with White faces. We exposed participants to sets of either Hadza or White European faces that were manipulated to possess either wide-spaced or narrow-spaced eyes. We collected normality judgments both pre-exposure and post-exposure by showing pairs of images, one with wide-spaced and one with narrow-spaced eyes. Examining the difference between the pre-exposure and post-exposure judgments revealed that participants selected an increased number of images that were congruent with the faces to which they had been exposed. The change in normality judgments was strongest for White faces, suggesting that representations of White ethnicity faces are more malleable and less robust to adaptation, potentially because of the decreased experience that individuals had with them. A second experiment using the same test stimuli with a sample of White participants revealed equivalent adaptation effects for both Hadza and White faces. These data highlight the role of experience on the high-level visual adaptation of faces.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)439-444
Number of pages6
JournalPsychonomic Bulletin & Review
Volume23
Issue number2
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 Apr 2016

Keywords

  • Adaptation
  • Aftereffects
  • Cross-cultural
  • Experience
  • Exposure
  • Face processing
  • Hunter-gatherers
  • Own race

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Experimental and Cognitive Psychology
  • Arts and Humanities (miscellaneous)
  • Developmental and Educational Psychology

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