The Voice of Wisdom: New Insights on Social Impressions of Aging Voices

Montepare, J.M., Kempler, D., & McLaughlin-Volpe, T. (2014). The Voice of Wisdom: New Insights on Social Impressions of Aging Voices. Journal of Language and Social Psychology January 8, 2014 0261927X13519080.

Abstract: To understand better how age-related physical qualities affect age stereotyping, this research investigated the social judgments young adult listeners make when they hear the voices of younger, middle-aged, and older adult speakers. Ninety-six listeners judged 24 speakers (22-79 years in age) reading a content-neutral passage. The listeners rated each speaker on scales reflecting character traits, vocal characteristics, and social affordances. Consistent with traditional age stereotypes, listeners judged older speakers to be less powerful and less engaged than younger speakers. However, even stronger than these negative impressions were positive impressions of older speakers’ greater wisdom, which were associated with distinct age-related vocal qualities. Moreover, although listeners indicated a desire to avoid interactions with older speakers, they acknowledged them as good storytellers. The positive impressions of older speakers are interpreted within an evolutionary-ecological perspective, suggesting that some age-related vocal qualities reveal long-standing, adaptive traits associated with older adulthood.

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(Something interesting I found)Posted:Jan 01 2014, 12:00 AM by brendah
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