New Research in Psychological Science

Read about the latest research published in Psychological Science:

The Role of Hedonic Behavior in Reducing Perceived Risk: Evidence From Postearthquake Mobile-App Data

Jayson S. Jia, Jianmin Jia, Christopher K. Hsee, and Baba Shiv

How does experiencing a disaster affect people’s daily behaviors? To study this, the researchers followed participants who had experienced the Ya’an earthquake, which occurred on April 20, 2013, in southwest China. The researchers used phone data to examine telecommunications and app usage in the timeframe before and after the earthquake. One week after the earthquake, a subset of participants reported how threatened they currently felt by the earthquake. Experiencing a higher level of earthquake intensity was associated with increased use of telecommunications and apps after the earthquake, but only hedonic behavior (e.g., the use of game or music apps) reduced perceived risk. This finding indicates that engaging in hedonic behavior could serve as a useful postdisaster strategy for coping and recovery.

Autopedophilia: Erotic-Target Identity Inversions in Men Sexually Attracted to Children

Kevin J. Hsu and J. Michael Bailey

Although many men are attracted to other people — thus having external erotic targets — some men are aroused by the idea of being the erotic target themselves — thus having an internal erotic target. Men who have this internal erotic focus are said to have sexuality characterized by an erotic-target identity inversion (ETII). The researchers examined ETII in men who are attracted to children by having them complete anonymous surveys assessing the degree to which they were attracted to males and females of different age ranges and whether they had ever fantasized about being a child or having a child’s body (i.e., autopedophilia). If participants did have such fantasies they were asked to provide detailed descriptions of them. Autopedophilia was common among men attracted to children, and the age and gender of children to whom men were attracted positively correlated with the age and gender of children men fantasized about being. This study sheds light on autopedophilia as an ETII and highlights the importance of considering this dimension of sexual attraction.

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