We investigated whether people are able to detect in a relatively automatic manner the
dominant or submissive status of persons engaged in social interactions. Using a variant of the
affective Simon task (De Houwer & Eelen, 1998), we demonstrated that the verbal response
DOMINANT or SUBMISSIVE was facilitated when it had to be made to a target person that
was respectively dominant or submissive. These results provide new information about the
automatic nature of appraisals and about interpersonal perception.