The rapid perceptual impact of emotional distractors

Briana L. Kennedy, Steven B. Most

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

20 Citations (Scopus)


The brief presentation of an emotional distractor can temporarily impair perception of a subsequent, rapidly presented target, an effect known as emotion-induced blindness (EIB). How rapidly does this impairment unfold? To probe this question, we examined EIB for targets that immediately succeeded ("lag-1") emotional distractors in a rapid stream of items relative to EIB for targets at later serial positions. Experiments 1 and 2 suggested that emotional distractors interfere with items presented very soon after them, with impaired target perception emerging as early as lag-1. Experiment 3 included an exploratory examination of individual differences, which suggested that EIB onsets more rapidly among participants scoring high in measures linked to negative affect.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)e0129320
JournalPLoS One
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - 2015
Externally publishedYes

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