Peer-reviewed publications in English

  1. Bocian, K., Bialobrzeska, O. & Parzuchowski, M. (2017). Assessing size and subjective value of objects with diminutive names. Polish Psychological Bulletin, 48(3), 423-429. doi:10.1515/ppb-2017-0048 ABSTRACT

    Numerous studies show that language (in its grammatical forms or morphology) can influence both perceptual judgments, as well as the mental categorization of objects in memory. Previous research showed that using diminutive names of objects resulted in being less satisfied with owning said objects and lowering their perceived value. In the present studies, to explore this phenomenon, we decided to investigate whether the influence of a diminutive on the reduction in the subjective value of an object is determined by the perceived size of the object, in accordance with the „bigger is better” heuristic. In Study 1 participants estimated a banknote to be smaller when it was presented with a diminutive label “banknocik” (banknote with diminutive) than “banknot” (banknote). However, this was not related to the perceived subjective value of the banknote. In Study 2 participants declared that they could buy less with a coin labeled as “pieniążek” (coin with diminutive) than “pieniądz” (coin), but the effect was not linked to the perceived size of the coins. In Study 3 a candy bar labeled as “batonik” (candy bar with diminutive) was evaluated worse than the same product labeled “baton” (candy bar), however, once again this was not related to the evaluation of its size (weight). Thus, we show that the effect of diminutives on the reduction in the subjective value of an object is independent of the evaluation of the size of the object and we consider other explanations for the occurrence of this phenomenon.
  2. IJzerman, H., Čolić, M., Hennecke, M., Hong, Y., Hu, Ch., Joy-Gaba, J., Lazarević, D., Lazarević, L., Parzuchowski, M., Ratner, K., Schubert, T.W., Schutz, A., Stojilović, D., Weissgerber, S., Zickfeld, J., & Lindenberg, S. (2017). Does Distance from the Equator Predict Self-Control? Lessons from the Human Penguin Project. Behavioral and Brain Sciences, 40. doi:10.1017/S0140525X16001035. ABSTRACT

    We comment on the proposition “that lower temperatures and especially greater seasonal variation in temperature call for individuals and societies to adopt … a greater degree of self-control” (Van Lange et al., sect. 3, para. 4) for which we cannot find empirical support in a large data set with data-driven analyses. After providing greater nuance in our theoretical review, we suggest that Van Lange et al. revisit their model with an eye toward the social determinants of self-control.
  3. Cantarero, K., Parzuchowski, M., Dukała, K. (2017). White lies in hand: Are other-oriented lies modified by hand gestures? Possibly not. Frontiers in Psychology, Cognition. doi: 10.3389/fpsyg.2017.00814. ABSTRACT

    Previous studies have shown that the hand-over-heart gesture is related to being more honest as opposed to using self-centred dishonesty. We assumed that the hand-over-heart gesture would also relate to other-oriented dishonesty, though the latter differs highly from self-centred lying. In Study 1 (N = 83), we showed that performing a hand-over-heart gesture diminished the tendency to use other-oriented white lies and that the fingers crossed behind one’s back gesture was not related to higher dishonesty. We then pre-registered and conducted Study 2 (N = 88), which was designed following higher methodological standards than Study 1. Contrary, to the findings of Study 1, we found that using the hand-over-heart gesture did not result in refraining from using other-oriented white lies. We discuss the findings of this failed replication indicating the importance of strict methodological guidelines in conducting research and also reflect on relatively small effect sizes related to some findings in embodied cognition.
  4. Parzuchowski, M., Bocian, K., & Gygax, P. M. (2016). Sizing up objects: the effect of diminutive forms on positive mood, value and size judgments. Frontiers in Psychology. 7:1452.doi: 10.3389/fpsyg.2016.01452 ABSTRACT

    Language (e.g., structure, morphology, and wording) can direct our attention toward the specific properties of an object, in turn influencing the mental representation of that same object. In this paper, we examined this idea by focusing on a particular linguistic form of diminution used in many languages (e.g., in Polish, Spanish, and Portuguese) to refer to an object as being “smaller.” Interestingly, although objects are usually considered “better” when they are bigger in size, objects described with linguistic diminution can also refer to those that are emotionally positive. Across three experiments conducted in Polish, we examined this lexical ambiguity in terms of mood (Experiment 1), subjective quality and monetary value (Experiment 2), and choice selection (Experiment 3). Overall, we found that people evaluate objects differently depending on the linguistic form (i.e., with or without diminution) with which they are described, and that it was related to the perceptual representation of these objects, and not their affective status. Objects described with diminution are evaluated as less satisfying and of lesser value and this effect is attributed to the way participants represent the objects (i.e., encoded and memorized). The generalizability of these effects is discussed.
  5. IJzerman, H., Szymkow, A., Parzuchowski, M. (2016). Warmer hearts, and warmer, but noisier rooms: Communality does elicit warmth, but only for those in colder ambient temperatures – Commentary on Ebersole et al. (2016). Journal of Experimental Social Psychology. 67, 88–90. doi: 10.1016/j.jesp.2015.12.004. ABSTRACT

    In this article, we comment on the replication attempt by Ebersole and colleagues (2015) on the effect that communal (vs. agentic) priming leads to estimates of higher ambient temperature. We conclude that the probability that the effect is true is considerable, but only at lower ambient temperatures. We comment on “hidden moderators”, data quality, and theoretical and methodological consequences of replication studies.
  6. Bialobrzeska, O., Parzuchowski, M. (2016). Size or Openness: Expansive but Closed Body Posture Increases Submissive Behavior. Polish Psychological Bulletin, 47 (2). 186–194. doi: 10.1515/ppb-2016-0022. ABSTRACT

    Expansive body posture is the most commonly studied and widely described in psychological literature. For many years, expansive posture was universally identified as a pose of power, but more recent research has revealed that the link between expansive posture and power may be moderated by gender, culture or even contextual cues. Our findings show that with little variation added to expansive posture it does not necessarily lead to the sense of power, and may actually trigger the opposite effect: a feeling of submissiveness. In three studies, persons assuming their body in a standing-at-attention posture were perceived as being more obedient (Experiment 1), thus participants who expanded their body in a standing-at-attention manner (although actually doing a non-obedient unrelated task) displayed greater compliance to requests (Experiment 2) and declared greater submissiveness toward social norms (Experiment 3). We discuss how the cultural and interpersonal context imprinted in specific body posture can modify the feedback of innate and universal body states.


  7. Wojciszke, B., Parzuchowski, M., Bocian, K. (2015). Moral judgments and impressions. Current Opinion in Psychology, 6, 50–54. doi:10.1016/j.copsyc.2015.03.028. ABSTRACT

    Moral psychology is booming and recent years brought a large body of research on moral judgments and impressions. We review up to date results about this important constituent of human morality focusing mainly on: (1) how deontology vs. utilitarianism drives moral judgments, (2) what is the role of intuition and deliberation in moral judgments, (3) how and why morality influences impressions of persons, and (4) how people perceive moral character. We also highlight some limitations of previous research and show how these limitations are being overcome recently.
  8. Schneider, I. K., Parzuchowski, M., Wojciszke, B., Schwarz, N., & Koole, S. (2015). Weighty data: importance information influences estimated weight of digital information storage devices. Frontiers in Psychology, 5:1536. doi: 10.3389/fpsyg.2014.01536 ABSTRACT

    Abstract: Previous work suggests that perceived importance of an object influences estimates of its weight. Specifically, important books were estimated to be heavier than non-important books. However, the experimental set-up of these studies may have suffered from a potential confound and findings may be confined to books only. Addressing this, we investigate the effect of importance on weight estimates by examining whether the importance of information stored on a data storage device (USB-stick or portable hard drive) can alter weight estimates. Results show that people thinking a USB-stick holds important tax information (vs. expired tax information vs. no information) estimate it to be heavier (Experiment 1) compared to people who do not. Similarly, people who are told a portable hard drive holds personally relevant information (vs. irrelevant), also estimate the drive to be heavier (Experiments 2A,B).

    Prof. Anna Borghi commented on the importance of this paper here:

  9. Parzuchowski, M., Szymkow, A., Baryla, W., Wojciszke, B. (2014). From the Heart: Hand over Heart as an Embodiment of Honesty. Cognitive Processing, 15, 237–244. doi: 10.1007/s10339-014-0606-4. ABSTRACT

    Abstract: Motor movements increase the accessibility of the thought content and processes with which they typically co-occur. In two studies, we demonstrate that putting a hand on one’s heart is associated with honesty, both perceived in others and shown in one’s own behavior. Target persons photographed when performing this gesture appeared more trustworthy than the same targets photographed with both hands down (Study 1). Participants who put their hand on their hearts were more willing to admit their lack of knowledge (Study 2), compared to when they performed a neutral gesture. These findings replicate and extend the notion that bodily experience related to abstract concepts of honesty can influence both perceptions of others, and one’s own actions.
  10. Parzuchowski, M., Wojciszke, B. (2014). Hand over Heart Primes Moral Judgments and Behavior. Journal of Nonverbal Behavior, 38, 145-165. doi: 10.1007/s10919-013-0170-0. ABSTRACT

    Abstract: Morality is a prominent guide of both action and perception. We argue that non-emotional gestures can prime the abstract concept of honesty. Four studies demonstrated that the emblematic gesture associated with honesty (putting a hand on one’s heart) increased the level of honesty perceived by others, and increased the honesty showed in one’s own behavior. Target persons performing this gesture were described in terms associated with honesty, and appeared more trustworthy to others than when the same targets were photographed with a control gesture. Persons performing the hand-over-heart gesture provided more honest assessments of others’ attractiveness, and refrained from cheating, as compared to persons performing neutral gestures. These findings suggest that bodily experience associated with abstract concepts can influence both one’s perceptions of others, and one’s own complex actions. Further, our findings suggest that this influence is not mediated by changes in affective states.
  11. Szymkow, A., Chandler, J., Ijzerman, H., Parzuchowski, M. & Wojciszke, B. (2013). Warmer hearts, warmer rooms: Focusing on positive communal but not agentic traits increases estimates of ambient temperature. Social Psychology, 44(2), 167–176. DOI: 10.1027/1864-9335/a000147 ABSTRACT

    Abstract: Conceptual representations of warmth have been shown to be related to people’s perceptions of ambient temperature. Based on this premise, we hypothesized that merely thinking about personality traits related to communion (but not agency) influences physical experience of warmth. Specifically, the three studies revealed that (a) perceptions of temperature are influenced by both positive and negative attributes within the communion but not agency dimension, (b) the effect is stronger when traits indicate sociability rather than morality sub-dimension of communion, and (c) communion activation affects temperature perceptions independently of target’s or self-perceptions.
  12. Wojciszke, B., Baryła, W., Parzuchowski, M., Szymków-Sudziarska, A., Abele, A. E. (2011). Self-esteem is dominated by agentic over communal information. European Journal of Social Psychology, 41, 617–627. doi: 10.1002/ejsp.791. ABSTRACT

    Abstract: We present a Double Perspective Model (DPM) explaining why agency (competence) and communion (warmth) constitute two basic content dimensions of social cognition. Every social action involves two perspectives: of the agent (a person who performs an action) and of the recipient (a person at whom the action is directed). Immediate cognitive goals of the agent and recipient differ, which results in heightened accessibility and weight of content referring either to agency (from the agent’s perspective) or to communion (from the recipient’s perspective). DPM explains why evaluations of other persons are dominated by communal over agentic considerations and allows a novel hypothesis that self-esteem is dominated by agentic over communal information. We present several studies supporting this hypothesis.
  13. Wojciszke, B., Baryla, W., Szymkow-Sudziarska, A., Parzuchowski, M., Kowalczyk, K. (2009). Saying is experiencing: Affective consequences of complaining and affirmation. Polish Psychological Bulletin, 40 (2). 74-84. doi: 10.2478/s10059-009-0008-0. ABSTRACT

    Abstract: In four experiments mood was measured before and after complaining or affirmation. Participants complained or affirmed either themselves or listened to such communications of another person. Mood decreased after complaining and increased after affirmation – a “saying is experiencing” (SIE) effect. This effect was found also in the cognitive load condition suggesting that automatic mood contagion underlies the SIE effect rather than mechanisms based on self-perception or self-awareness. Appropriateness of a topic for complaining appeared a boundary condition of the SIE effect: When a topic was considered by participants the most appropriate for complaining, the act of showing dissatisfaction with the topic led to mood improvement.
  14. Parzuchowski, M., & Szymkow-Sudziarska, A. (2008). Well, slap my thigh: Expression of surprise facilitates memory of surprising material. Emotion, 8 (3), 430-434. doi: 10.1037/1528-3542.8.3.430 ABSTRACT

    Abstract: Two studies examined the general prediction that one’s emotional expression should facilitate memory for material that matches the expression. The authors focused on specific facial expressions of surprise. In the first study, participants who were mimicking a surprised expression showed better recall for the surprising words and worse recall for neutral words, relative to those who were mimicking a neutral expression. Study 2 replicated the results of Study 1, showing that participants who mimicked a surprised expression recalled more words spoken in a surprising manner compared with those that sounded neutral or sad. Conversely, participants who mimicked sad facial expressions showed greater recall for sad than neutral or surprising words. The results provide evidence of the importance of matching the emotional valence of the recall content to the facial expression of the recaller during the memorization period.

Peer-reviewed publications in Polish

  1. Parzuchowski, M., Bialobrzeska, O., Osowiecka, M., Frankowska, N., Szymkow, A. (2017). One can handle the truth: nonverbal sign of honesty influence the level of obedience. Psychologia Społeczna, 40(1), 74-88. (Szczerość na wyciągnięcie ręki: Niewerbalny przejaw szczerości intencji proszącego wzbudza uległość) ABSTRACT

    Many research address the issue of complying to requests given by strangers. People are more willing to conform to requests of the ones they trust or from the ones they judge to be honest. Sender’s gestures and nonverbal behavior might suggest an honest intention behind the request, which should lead to higher rate of obedience. In three natural experiments we investigated whether nonverbal sign of honesty (hand over heart gesture) would increase senders’ honesty ratings and the compliance rate. We measured compliance towards the request as well as the declared (Study 1 & 2) and actual (Study 3) level of engagement participants performed, along with the ratings of sender’s honesty (Study 2 & 3). The results suggest that, the request accompanying a nonverbal emblematic hand movement of hand over heart (in comparison to several control gestures) increases the percentage of people acting in accordance with it. Results are discussed according to dual processing theory.
  2. Parzuchowski, M., Bocian, K., Wojciszke, B. (2016). Od skrajności do codzienności: współczesna psychologia ocen moralnych. Psychologia społeczna, 39(4), 388-398.

    The current paper reviews the modern literature on psychology of moral judgments. In the past moral judgments have been studied using experiments that presented participants with vignettes of moral dilemmas that are both extreme and very rare. In this paper we document the current state of knowledge in this field and we describe the modern paradigm shift. Our review paper covers three main points: 1) it sums up the current state of moral psychology; 2) reviews the objections against the abstractness and extremity of moral dilemmas; 3) reviews the difference between the Jonathan Haidt’s moral foundations theory which was based on extreme cases of dilemmas and Kurt Gray and Daniel Wegner’s dyadic morality theory which was formulated using more mundane moral situations.
  3. Białobrzeska, O., Bocian, K., Parzuchowski, M., Frankowska, N., Wojciszke, B. (2015). To nie fair (bo mi szkodzi): zaangażowanie interesu własnego zniekształca ocenę sprawiedliwości dystrybutywnej. Psychologia Społeczna, 10 (33), 149–162. ABSTRACT

    Are people able to objectively evaluate fairness of the principles ruling the distribution of goods? Such principles often encourage or threaten their own interests and as such people may lose objectivity. But maybe howling injustice is evaluated positively if it is in favour of one’s interest? We present three experiments, that aim to verify the hypothesis that engagement of one’s interest distorts the evaluation of the principles of fairness of distribution of goods. Consequently, principles serving one’s interest are regarded as more just. In Pilot Study (N = 34) doctoral students considered controversial scholarship regulations to be more just when it was in favour of their own interest. In Experiment 1 (N = 97) men evaluated unequal treatment of women in job environment as just when it favoured their own sex. In Experiment 2 (N = 80) go-cart racetrack users evaluated racing rules as more just when they benefited from them, but not when they were beneficial to others. We discuss the observed effects in reference to automatic egocentrism conception (Epley & Caruso, 2004).
  4. Wojciszke, B., Bocian, K., Parzuchowski, M., Szymków, A. (2014). On the inescapability of bias in moral judgments. Nauka, 3, 45-62.

  5. Szymkow, A., Parzuchowski, M. (2013). Communion embodied: The influence of communion priming on temperature estimates. Psychologia Społeczna, 8(27), 367–379. (Wspólnotowość ucieleśniona: wpływ aktywizacji cech wspólnotowych na odczuwanie temperatury) ABSTRACT

    Abstract: The growing body of research suggest that psychological warmth is closely related to physical warmth, namely temperature. Replicating previous work we show in two studies that merely thinking about personality traits related to communion (but not agency) influences physical experience of warmth. We also extend previous findings by revealing that (a) the influence of communal dimension on temperature perception is not limited to estimates of temperature in Celsius degrees, but is also evident for subjective experience of warmth, (b) the effect is evident not only for ambient temperature but also temperature of perceived object, and (c) the effect is not related to both the sex of perceived person and participant’s sex. The results are interpreted in terms of embodiment theories.
  6. Parzuchowski, M., Bocian, K., Baryła, W. (2012). Activation of a stereotype of an immoral person facilitates the cleanliness motive. Psychologia Społeczna, 7 (23), 297–306. (Aktywizacja stereotypu osoby niemoralnej nasila motyw czystości) ABSTRACT

    Abstract: Bodily purity and physical cleanliness is closely related to a large variety of moral judgments. Moral transgressions are often perceived to be unclean thus elicit the desire to cleanse. We propose, that desire to cleanse can be induced by thinking about immoral behaviors of others, which leads to i) higher preference for cleansing products; ii) behavioral action of cleaning to protect possible contamination. In two experiments participants were primed with an immoral target person (a pedophile) or a control moral target (an altruist, a nun, or a secretary). In each case, the results showed that immoral behaviors of other people can increase the desire to cleanse. In Experiment 1, participants that imagined a pedophile showed higher preference for cleansing products, than participants in the control groups. In Experiment 2, students who filled a questionnaire about personality traits of a stereotypical pedophile visited University’s lavatories twice as often as participants in a control group. Taken together, these data indicate that merely thinking about foul behaviors of others can activate a motive for cleanliness.
  7. Kwiecien, M., Puchalska, M., Parzuchowski, M. (2009). Too Much Of A Good Thing. Dilution model in person perception. Psychologia Jakosci Zycia, 2, 221-234. (Co za dużo, to niezdrowo? Model rozmywania w spostrzeganiu innych).

  8. Parzuchowski, M. (2008). On the Ineffectiveness of Provoking Distrust. Psychologia Społeczna, 4 (9), 362–365. (O nieskuteczności prowokowania nieufności). ABSTRACT

    Abstract: Witkowski accomplished a successful hoax publishing an article in the popular science magazine Charaktery that reviewed a bogus therapy that readers found interesting and believable. This commentary approaches the debate from two standpoints: (1) hoax type of provocations should be addressed to a critical reader; (2) provoking readers’ distrust does not help them choose an eficient therapy. The described provocation is discussed in relation to therapeutic choices by oncology patients.
  9. Parzuchowski, M. (2005). „I also Hate Politics”: Relational Functions of Complaining. Psychologia Jakosci Zycia, 4 (1), 37-52. („Ja tez nie cierpie polityki”: relacyjna funkcja narzekania).