Matsumoto (2011), identified five behavioral areas that provide cues to deceit: facial expressions, gestures, body language, voice, and verbal style. The first behavioral area is directly linked with identifying and interpreting micro-expressions. Micro-expressions (e.g. of fear, anger, joy, etc.) are small indicators of otherwise suppressed emotion which may appear unconsciously on a person’s face for a duration as brief as 1/25th of a second. A few micro-expression examples and their correlating emotions include:

  1. False smiles; indicated by a lack of bagged skin under the eyes and/or the absence of crow’s feet wrinkles;
  2. Anger; indicated by lowered eyebrows
  3. Fear; indicated by raised eyebrows.

An “alert observer will be able to detect such a facial expression” unless the observer blinks at the exact moment the micro-expression appears.


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