The role of visual perspective in information processing

Yuwei Jiang, Robert S. Wyer

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review

28 Citations (Scopus)


Social events can be described from the perspective of either a person in the situation in which the event occurs (e.g., "John came into...") or that of an outside observer ("John went into..."). We find that when individuals are disposed to form visual images, they have difficulty comprehending both verbal statements and pictures when the perspective from which the event is described differs from the perspective from which they have encountered similar events in daily life. Furthermore, the disposition to form visual images increases the intensity of emotional reactions to an event when the event is described from the perspective of someone in the situation in which it occurs. These effects are not evident, however, among individuals who typically process information semantically without forming visual images.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)486-495
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of Experimental Social Psychology
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 1 May 2009
Externally publishedYes


  • Comprehension
  • Individual difference
  • Information processing
  • Mental imagery
  • Visual perspective

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Social Psychology
  • Sociology and Political Science


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