Although previous studies seem to indicate that alexithymic individuals have a deficit in their ability to recognize emotional stimuli, none had studied the relationship between alexithymia and verbal and non verbal abilities and their possible role in emotion recognition. The aim of the present study is to further investigate the relationship between alexithymia and emotion recognition ability. In particular we studied whether this relationship is mediated by verbal ability. Thirty-five students were selected from a group of 91 University students previously screened for alexithymia (Toronto Alexithymia Scale; TAS-20). Participants were shown black and white slides depicting facial expression of the following emotions: anger, sadness, disgust, surprise, happiness and fear. Compared to low alexithymic participants, and, more importantly, taking verbal IQ into account, high alexithymic and low alexithymic participants did not differ in emotion recognition.
Psychiatric Quarterly – Springer Journals
Published: Dec 25, 2010
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