The Relationship Between Ideology and Disgust Sensitivity as Measured Through Event Related Brain Potentials

[Speaker] Lewis, John E:1
[Co-author] Fieldstone, Shaina C:1, Black, Ryan A:1, Tartar, Jaime L:1
1:Nova Southeastern university (United States of America)

This paper aims to examine if disgust sensitivity differs based on ideology using five electroencephalographic (EEG) electrode locations. We proposed to examine this complex relationship by assessing disgust sensitivity in 26 participants while we simultaneously manipulated emotional state through the use of emotionally negative or neutral pictures. We used EEG event-related brain potentials (ERPs) as the primary index of the influence of emotional processing on cognitive functioning. To assess for moderation we ran 2x2 ANOVAs. The within factors were picture category (neutral vs. disgust as measured by the average of participants' ratings), while the between factor was ideology (self-reported liberal vs. conservative). This analysis was conducted for each electrode location (Cz, Fz, Pz, C3, C4). As hypothesized, we found that conservatives showed more disgust sensitivity based on their ERP response. The results of this study helped clarify the extent to which disgust sensitivity influences moral decisions and, therefore, ideology.
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