The research project focuses on neural and physiological correlates of being emotionally moved. In several studies, we look at the activity of several prominent physiological signals, such as facial muscle activity, skin conductance, heart activity and the BOLD signal, while participants listen to moving poems or watch their favorite film scenes. To identify this complex emotional state of feeling moved, we use two objectively measurable physiological markers: goose bumps and tears.
Wassiliwizky, E., Jacobsen, T., Heinrich, J., Schneiderbauer, M., & Menninghaus, W. (2017). Tears falling on goosebumps: Co-occurrence of emotional lacrimation and emotional piloerection indicates a psychophysiological climax in emotional arousal. Frontiers in Psychology, 8(41). doi:10.3389/fpsyg.2017.00041
Wassiliwizky, E., Wagner, V., Jacobsen, T., & Menninghaus, W. (2015). Art-elicited chills indicate states of being moved. Psychology of Aesthetics, Creativity, and the Arts, 9(4), 405-416. doi:10.1037/aca0000023
Menninghaus, W., Wagner, V., Hanich, J., Wassiliwizky, E., Kuehnast, M., & Jacobsen, T. (2015). Towards a Psychological Construct of Being Moved. Plos One, 10(6), e0128451. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0128451
Kuehnast, M., Wagner, V., Wassiliwizky, E., Jacobsen, T., & Menninghaus, W. (2014). Being Moved: Linguistic Representation and Conceptual Structure. Frontiers in Psychology, 5. doi:10.3389/fpsyg.2014.01242 PDF