6+9+12: EVERYONE CAN BE TAUGHT TO DELIBERATELY FAKE A SMILE WITH THE “GENUINE ENJOYMENT DUCHENNE MARKER”
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It is generally believed that people cannot deliberately contract the orbicularis oculi pars orbitalis (“Action Unit 6,” "Duchenne Marker" or "Cheek Raiser") muscle together with the zygomaticus major (“AU12” or "smile" muscle) unless they experience genuine happiness. This experiment tested the theory that both muscles can be activated together voluntarily if one first contracts the levator labii superioris alaeque nasi (“AU9” or "nose wrinkler") muscle. Subjects in isolation followed a set of instructions written and picture instructions to capture themselves posing different facial expressions. The images were then coded for muscular contraction intensity by two people trained in the Facial Action Coding System but unfamiliar with the goals of this study. The results question the use of observing simultaneous orbicularis oculi pars orbitalis and zygomaticus major activation as a sufficient measure of positive affect in various psychological studies of emotion.
Shlomo, Benjamin (2011). 6+9+12: EVERYONE CAN BE TAUGHT TO DELIBERATELY FAKE A SMILE WITH THE “GENUINE ENJOYMENT DUCHENNE MARKER”. Honors and Undergraduate Research. Available electronically from