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Interpersonal effects of expressed anger and sorrow in morally charged negotiation


  • Morteza Dehghani
  • Peter J. Carnevale
  • Jonathan Gratch


The expression of emotion can play a significant role in strategic decision-making. In this study, we hypothesized that emotion expression alters behavior in morally charged negotiation. We investigated the impact of facial displays of discrete emotions, specifically anger and sadness, in a morally charged multi-issue negotiation task. Our results indicate that if a negotiator associated moral significance to the object of the negotiation, displays of anger resulted in reduced concession making whereas displays of sadness increased concession making. Moral significance of the issues fostered an emotional matching mechanism of sorrow, where a sorrow expression from one party elicited a sorrow expression from the other. Taken together, the results indicate that emotional expressions can affect morally charged negotiation in ways that can inhibit as well as promote cooperation.

Suggested Citation

  • Morteza Dehghani & Peter J. Carnevale & Jonathan Gratch, 2014. "Interpersonal effects of expressed anger and sorrow in morally charged negotiation," Judgment and Decision Making, Society for Judgment and Decision Making, vol. 9(2), pages 104-113, March.
  • Handle: RePEc:jdm:journl:v:9:y:2014:i:2:p:104-113

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Kahneman, Daniel & Knetsch, Jack L & Thaler, Richard H, 1990. "Experimental Tests of the Endowment Effect and the Coase Theorem," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 98(6), pages 1325-1348, December.
    2. Scott Atran & Robert Axelrod, 2008. "Reframing Sacred Values," Post-Print ijn_00505185, HAL.
    3. Morteza Dehghani & Scott Atran & Rumen Iliev & Sonya Sachdeva & Douglas Medin & Jeremy Ginges, 2010. "Sacred values and conflict over Iran's nuclear program," Judgment and Decision Making, Society for Judgment and Decision Making, vol. 5(7), pages 540-546, December.
    4. Morteza Dehghani & Rumen Iliev & Sonya Sachdeva & Scott Atran & Jeremy Ginges & Douglas Medin, 2009. "Emerging sacred values: Iran's nuclear program," Judgment and Decision Making, Society for Judgment and Decision Making, vol. 4(7), pages 530-533, December.
    5. Tiedens, Larissa Z., 2001. "Anger and Advancement versus Sadness and Subjugation: The Effect of Negative Emotion Expressions on Social Status Conferral," Research Papers 1615, Stanford University, Graduate School of Business.
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    Cited by:

    1. Barasch, Alixandra & Levine, Emma E. & Schweitzer, Maurice E., 2016. "Bliss is ignorance: How the magnitude of expressed happiness influences perceived naiveté and interpersonal exploitation," Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes, Elsevier, vol. 137(C), pages 184-206.


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