Video Interview: Universal facial expressions of emotion.

Courtney Waller, Sophie Zadeh Interview

Recently, I had the pleasure of working with Filmmaker, Courtney Waller, from Courtney Waller Productions. Courtney was interviewing me for the second time. You can see the first interview here.

This time we were talking about the topic of my TED-Ed animation (embedded at the end of this post)–universal facial expressions of emotion. We dig deep into the topic and discuss the interesting science behind expressions. We touch on several areas including:

  • The universal expressions.

  • The history of emotion–Duchenne electrocuting his subjects to simulate expression.

  • 'Display rules'–cultural expression of emotion.

  • Animal and human expression.

  • The effects of botox on expression and our experience of emotion, and the potential for treating depression and OCD with botox.

  • How we can trigger emotions.

  • Macro-expressions and micro-expressions.

Can you spot the involuntary stress indicator?

I've said before that I'm out of my comfort zone in the presence of a camera. I'm doing my best to conceal this fear, but there's an involuntary stress indicator that gives the game away. Can you spot it? It's most obvious right at the start and at the end of the video when I turn to look into the camera... high blink rate. 

The Interview


TED-Ed animation