Data from: Perceiving the evil eye: investigating hostile interpretation of ambiguous facial emotional expression in violent and non-violent offenders

Dataset

Description

Research into the causal and perpetuating factors influencing aggression has partly focused on the general tendency of aggression-prone individuals to infer hostile intent in others, even in ambiguous circumstances. This is referred to as the 'hostile interpretation bias'. Whether this hostile interpretation bias also exists in basal information processing, such as perception of facial emotion, is not yet known, especially with respect to the perception of ambiguous expressions. In addition, little is known about how this potential bias in facial emotion perception is related to specific characteristics of aggression. In the present study, conducted in a penitentiary setting with detained male adults, we investigated if violent offenders (n = 71) show a stronger tendency to interpret ambiguous facial expressions on a computer task as angry rather than happy, compared to non-violent offenders (n = 14) and to a control group of healthy volunteers (n = 32). We also investigated if hostile perception of facial expressions is related to specific characteristics of aggression, such as proactive and reactive aggression. No clear statistical evidence was found that violent offenders perceived facial emotional expressions as more angry than non-violent offenders or healthy volunteers. A regression analysis in the violent offender group showed that only age and a self-report measure of hostility predicted outcome on the emotion perception task. Other traits, such as psychopathic traits, intelligence, attention and a tendency to jump to conclusions were not associated with interpretation of anger in facial emotional expressions. We discuss the possible impact of the study design and population studied on our results, as well as implications for future studies.,2017.10.23 Perceiving Evil Eye Data SheetIn this observational study, conducted in a penitentiary setting in the Netherlands with detained male adults, we investigated if violent offenders (n = 71) show a stronger tendency to interpret ambiguous facial expressions on a computer task as angry rather than happy, compared to non-violent offenders (n = 14) and to a control group of healthy volunteers (n = 32). We also investigated if hostile perception of facial expressions is associated with specific characteristics of aggression, such as proactive and reactive aggression, based on multiple self-report questionnaires (Buss-Perry Aggression Questionnaire, Reactive-Proactive Aggression Qurestionnaire) and behavioural observations (Social Dysfunction and Aggression Scale - SDAS, rated once a week over a period of 4 weeks). Other relevant variables, such as psychopathic traits (Psychopathic Personality Inventory-revised), intelligence (Raven Standard Progressive Matrices), attention (Trail Makint Test-A/B) and a tendency to jump to conclusions (beads-in-a-jar task) were also assessed. The study protocol was not published online. Participants completed a neuropsychological test battery, of which the threshold score of the emotion perception task was the primary outcome measure. The threshold score of the emotion perception task is scored so that lower scores reflect a tendency to rate the faces as angry, while higher scores reflect a tendency to rate the faces as happy. The data dictionary defines the contents of the data sheet comprehensively. The data set comprises group, age-categories, data on the above mentioned questionnaires and neuropsychological tests (including threshold score). Conviction data were not included in the data file to ensure anonymity of the participants. The deposit includes the following files: Data Dictionary Data Sheet Data files and data dictionary can be opened in Excel or SPSS software.2017.10.23 Perceiving Evil Eye Data DictionaryThis files shows all data descriptions,
Date made available8 Jan 2019
PublisherDryad

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