Emotional Psychophysiological Responses during Self-Referential and Persuasive Talks
Coffman, Marika C.
Previous studies of individuals performing public speech tasks have not included a broad array of speech conditions or employed psychophysiological measures of a broad range of emotional states. In this study, we asked one participant to give self-referential and persuasive pleasant, neutral, and aversive talks while two other participants listened to those talks in vivo. We explored the modulation of corrugator, zygomatic, and orbicularis oculi EMGs as well as P3 brain responses to startle probes that elicited startle blink and postauricular reflexes during these talks. We found that EMG activity, particularly in the listeners, was greater during persuasive than self-referential talks; however, there were no clear patterns of valence-related modulation of these psychophysiological responses. Suggestions for improving this paradigm are advanced.