Smiling and relative status in news photographs

J Soc Psychol. 2002 Aug;142(4):500-10. doi: 10.1080/00224540209603914.


To test the hypothesis that lower social status is associated with more smiling, the authors used newspaper photographs and their associated news stories as the basis for scoring the smiling and relative social status of the 2 individuals in each photograph. Independent raters judged smiling and 5 dimensions of relative status for 496 individuals in 248 newspaper photographs. There was no relation between status and smiling, although status and smiling were both related to other variables such as gender, age, and story valence. These findings add to a growing body of evidence that there is no generalized relation between smiling and status.

Publication types

  • Clinical Trial
  • Randomized Controlled Trial
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Age Factors
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Newspapers as Topic
  • Photography
  • Sex Factors
  • Smiling*
  • Social Class*
  • Social Perception*
  • United States