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WIREs Cogn Sci
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Social cognition

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Abstract Social cognition research investigates the way information present in the social environment is represented and used in adaptively guiding behavior. Representations of persons and of social relationships form the basic building blocks of social cognition, and we review what is known about how such representations are constructed and constituted. In particular, we review a range of mechanisms whereby observers can infer the psychological qualities of the actors they encounter, including relatively automatic processes as well as more thoughtful and deliberative ones. Prominent approaches for situating person representations within the context of interpersonal relationships are also reviewed. Copyright © 2010 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd. This article is categorized under: Psychology > Reasoning and Decision Making

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