The goal of this study was to further our understanding of the relationship between the ability to identify one’s emotions and the kinds of emotion arousing experiences that people prefer. One hundred and eighty-six undergraduate students completed the Toronto Alexithymia Scale, the Beck Depression Inventory, and a questionnaire inquiring about subjects’ movie preferences. Individuals who reported having difficulty identifying their emotions were more likely than those without such difficulty to prefer negatively valenced movies relative to happy movies. Individuals who had both high levels of depression and alexithymia were more likely to prefer fear-arousing rather than anger-arousing movies.

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