Negativity and emotions: Valence framing effects in L1 and L2

Bregje Holleman, Emily Felker, Naomi Kamoen, Marijn Struiksma

Research output: Contribution to conferencePaperOther research output


People react differently to positive wordings than to negatives, which may be caused by negativity bias: a difference in emotional force of these wordings. The Emotional Resonance Hypothesis (e.g., Costa et al. 2014; Keysar et al., 2012) predicts that framing effects are larger in a native language than in a foreign language, because emotions are assumed to be more strongly connected to one’s mother tongue. The current research tests this hypothesis for second language users outside of a classroom context, and for three well-known framing effects: risky-choice framing, attribute framing, and polarity in survey questions. In an experimental survey study ran on MTurk, 475 participants were confronted with framing tasks either in Spanish or English. Participants were either English L1 speakers with Spanish as an L2, native speakers of Spanish with English as an L2, or bilinguals who learned both English and Spanish from birth. We found clear evidence for the existence of riskychoice framing and attribute framing effects, but these effects were always equally large in a native and in a foreign language. Hence, we found no evidence for the Emotional Resonance Hypothesis.
Original languageEnglish
Publication statusPublished - 2018
EventAnnual Conference of the International Communication Association 2018 - Prague, Czech Republic
Duration: 24 May 201828 May 2018
Conference number: 68


ConferenceAnnual Conference of the International Communication Association 2018
Country/TerritoryCzech Republic
Internet address


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