Cuteness and Disgust: The Humanizing and Dehumanizing Effects of Emotion

Emotion Review 3 (3):245-251 (2011)
Moral emotions are evolved mechanisms that function in part to optimize social relationships. We discuss two moral emotions— disgust and the “cuteness response”—which modulate social-engagement motives in opposite directions, changing the degree to which the eliciting entity is imbued with mental states (i.e., mentalized). Disgust-inducing entities are hypo-mentalized (i.e., dehumanized); cute entities are hyper-mentalized (i.e., “humanized”). This view of cuteness—which challenges the prevailing view that cuteness is a releaser of parental instincts (Lorenz, 1950/1971)—explains (a) the broad range of affiliative behaviors elicited by cuteness, (b) the marketing of cuteness to children (by toy makers and animators) to elicit play, and (c) the apparent ease and frequency with which cute things are anthropomorphized.
Keywords No keywords specified (fix it)
Categories (categorize this paper)
DOI 10.1177/1754073911402396
 Save to my reading list
Follow the author(s)
My bibliography
Export citation
Find it on Scholar
Edit this record
Mark as duplicate
Revision history Request removal from index
Download options
PhilPapers Archive

Upload a copy of this paper     Check publisher's policy on self-archival     Papers currently archived: 23,209
External links
Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server
Configure custom proxy (use this if your affiliation does not provide a proxy)
Through your library
References found in this work BETA

No references found.

Add more references

Citations of this work BETA

View all 7 citations / Add more citations

Similar books and articles

Monthly downloads

Added to index


Total downloads

26 ( #183,016 of 1,941,073 )

Recent downloads (6 months)

6 ( #149,738 of 1,941,073 )

How can I increase my downloads?

My notes
Sign in to use this feature

Start a new thread
There  are no threads in this forum
Nothing in this forum yet.