In this line of work, I investigate cultural diversity in the way that emotions are perceived and experienced. I conduct field work in small-scale societies (Himba pastoralist society in Namibia and Hadza hunter-gatherer society in Tanzania). This research has revealed considerable variation in meaning-making about Western style expressions of emotion (in the face and voice), with a relative emphasis on action and situation in these societies compared to Americans. See Media Coverage
Ongoing research leverages behavioral and ambulatory neuroimaging techniques to examine this cultural variation. In addition, I have expanded this line of research to examine cultural diversity in large-scale industrialized societies as well, with a particular focus on emotions in Chinese culture.