Controversies, Questions, and Prospects for Spontaneous Social Inferences

James S. Uleman, Soyon Rim, S. Adil Saribay, Laura M. Kressel

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Three decades of research on spontaneous social inferences, particularly traits, have settled some questions and generated more. We describe that research in terms of these controversies and questions. If you think you know the story, read on because it continues to surprise all of us. It deals with such broader issues as automatic and controlled processing, the nature of meaning, causality, stages of forming inferences about others, the role of consciousness, and differences between implicit and explicit impressions. Evidence on neurological substrate is growing. Spontaneous inferences continue to be a useful tool for illuminating impression formation processes.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)657-673
Number of pages17
JournalSocial and Personality Psychology Compass
Issue number9
StatePublished - Sep 2012

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Social Psychology


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