Why Different Positive Emotions Have Different Effects: an Evolutionary Approach to Discrete Positive Emotions and Processing of Persuasive Messages

Vladas Griskevicius, University of Minnesota, USA
Michelle N. Shiota , Arizona State University, USA
Samantha Neufeld, Arizona State University, USA
Much research has found that positive affect facilitates increased reliance on heuristics. However, evolutionary theories focusing on distinct evolutionary fitness-enhancing functions of positive emotions predict important differences among different positive states. Two experiments investigated how four positive emotions influenced the processing of persuasive messages. Results showed that amusement and enthusiasm facilitated more heuristic processing, consistent with previous research. However, the positive emotions of awe and nurturant love produced more systematic processing consistent with predictions from our model. Mediation analyses suggested that the effects distinguishing different positive emotions from a neutral condition were best accounted for by different mediators, rather than by a common mediator.
[ to cite ]:
Vladas Griskevicius, Michelle N. Shiota , and Samantha Neufeld (2010) ,"Why Different Positive Emotions Have Different Effects: an Evolutionary Approach to Discrete Positive Emotions and Processing of Persuasive Messages", in NA - Advances in Consumer Research Volume 37, eds. Margaret C. Campbell, Jeff Inman, and Rik Pieters, Duluth, MN : Association for Consumer Research, Pages: 24-27 .