Emotional Contagion Analytical Essay

Looks at the theoretical antecedents, underlying factors, practical implications and social utility of the psychological phenomenon, emotional contagion.
# 151721 | 3,080 words | 16 sources | APA | 2009 | US
Published on Sep 06, 2012 in Psychology (Social) , Sociology (Theory) , Psychology (Theory)

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This paper explains that emotional contagion is the conscious or unconscious induction of behavioral attitudes between persons or groups though a process of perception, imitation and internalization. Next, the author relates the primary types, influences and consequences of this interpersonal phenomenon and differentiates between implicit (automatic) and explicit (deliberate) contagion, each of which is largely unconscious but involves a conscious element. After reviewing the components, stages and factors that underlie this process, the paper explores the effect that emotional contagion has on everyday lives, both in the home and workplace.

Table of Contents:
Implicit Contagion
Explicit Contagion
Underlying Factors
Practical Implications

From the Paper:

"Emotional contagion is described as a two-stage process The first stage is characterized by an unintentional mimicking of the public display of moods to others. Chartrand and Bargh (1999) conducted a study in which he observed that participants would unconsciously mimic the smiles of their partners. In everyday life, at least for most people, a smile is rarely unreturned. The second stage is defined by the mood response to the mimicking behavior. It is irrelevant if the mimicking behavior is facial, vocal or postural -the mood response will be accordingly. In other words, when smiling the mood response will be positive, and when frowning the mood response will be negative.
"'Group affective tone consists of consistent or homogenous affective reactions within a group.' Even though group affective tone is treated as a group property it is recognized that not all group members have the same mood. It defines the overall mood between the group members based on theoretical structures such as 'composition of the groups, socialization of the group members, and the exposure of group members to the same affective events, such as task demands and outcomes.' Using a classroom scenario as an example, when students have the freedom to choose their own partners for group projects, the composition tends to be defined by previous socialization of the individuals who will then work towards the same goal under similar conditions. A positive group affective tone is likely to be achieved under these conditions."

Sample of Sources Used:

  • Batson, C.D., Shaw, L.L., Oleson, K.C. (1992). Differentiating affect, mood and emotion: Toward functionally-based conceptual distinctions. Emotion. Newbury Park, CA: Sage.
  • Barsade, S.G. (2002). The ripple effect: Emotional contagion and its influence on group behavior. Yale SOM Working Paper No. OB-01. Available at SSRN: http://ssrn.com/abstract=250894.
  • Cacioppo, J.T., Gardner, W.L., & Berntson, G.G. (1997). Beyond bipolar conceptualizations and measures: The case of attitudes and evaluative space. PERSONALITY AND SOCIAL PSYCHOLOGY REVIEW, 1: 3-25.
  • Cappella, J.N, & Schreiber, D.M. (2006). The interaction management function of nonverbal cues. In The Sage handbook of nonverbal communication (pp. 361-79), V. Manusov & M.I. Patterson (eds.). Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage.
  • Chartrand, T.L., & Bargh, J.A. (1999). The chameleon effect: The perception-behavior link and social interaction. JOURNAL OF PERSONALITY AND SOCIAL PSYCHOLOGY, 76, 893-910.

Cite this Analytical Essay:

APA Format

Emotional Contagion (2012, September 06) Retrieved July 06, 2020, from https://www.academon.com/analytical-essay/emotional-contagion-151721/

MLA Format

"Emotional Contagion" 06 September 2012. Web. 06 July. 2020. <https://www.academon.com/analytical-essay/emotional-contagion-151721/>