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Polish Psychological Bulletin

The Journal of Committee for Psychological Sciences of Polish Academy of Sciences

4 Issues per year

CiteScore 2016: 0.33

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Volume 45, Issue 4


You are so kind – and I am kind and smart: Actor – Observer Differences in the Interpretation of On-going Behavior

Andrea E. Abele / Susanne Bruckmüller / Bogdan Wojciszke
Published Online: 2014-12-16 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.2478/ppb-2014-0048


: The dual perspective model of agency and communion predicts that observers tend to interpret a target’s behavior more in terms of communion than agency, whereas actors interpret their behavior more in terms of agency. The present research for the first time tests this model in real interactions. Previously unacquainted participants had a short conversation and afterwards rated their own behavior (actor perspective) and their interaction partner’s behavior (observer perspective) in terms of agency(self-confident, assertive) and communion(trustworthy, empathic). Supporting the dual perspective model, observers rated the actor’s behavior higher on communion than on agency, and higher on communion than actors themselves did. Findings for actors were more complex: Actors rated their own behavior as more agentic than observers did. However, they also rated their behavior high on communion. We discuss implications for the dual perspective model as well as for (mis)understandings in social interactions.

Keywords : actor-observer differences; agency; communion; dual perspective model


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About the article

Published Online: 2014-12-16

Published in Print: 2014-12-01

Citation Information: Polish Psychological Bulletin, Volume 45, Issue 4, Pages 394–401, ISSN (Online) 1641-7844, DOI: https://doi.org/10.2478/ppb-2014-0048.

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© Polish Academy of Sciences, Committee for Psychological Sciences. This work is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 3.0 License. BY-NC-ND 3.0

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