Psychological and neurophysiological correlates of social vocal control

Guldner, Stella

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URN: urn:nbn:de:bsz:180-madoc-593717
Document Type: Doctoral dissertation
Year of publication: 2021
Place of publication: Mannheim
University: Universität Mannheim
Evaluator: Krüger, Frank
Date of oral examination: 15 April 2021
Publication language: English
Institution: Außerfakultäre Einrichtungen > Graduate School of Economic and Social Sciences- CDSS (Social Sciences)
License: CC BY 4.0 Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International (CC BY 4.0)
Subject: 150 Psychology
Keywords (English): voice production , social communication , fMRI , empathy
Abstract: Flexible vocal behaviour is an important paralinguistic signal in social interactions, but it is unclear whether such social vocal control can occur volitionally and specifically, and which speaker characteristics contribute to this ability. In this dissertation, the psychological and neurophysiological mechanisms involved in social vocal control are addressed using a novel social vocal control task, behavioural ratings and functional neuroimaging. Speakers evoked specific social trait impressions in listeners through targeted vocal modulations. While speakers’ self-reported level of Machiavellianism predicted the ability to evoke favourable trait percepts in listeners, dispositional empathy was not related to vocal control performance. Processing regions involved in vocomotor control and social cognitive processing interacted on the level of the left inferior frontal gyrus during social vocal control, while performance was associated with activation in somatosensory and social feedback regions. Social vocal control might be a route for impression management and support successful social interactions.

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