Lecture 6 - Jan 19th

Lecture 6 - Jan 19th - Group Life & the Evolution of...

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Group Life & the Evolution of the Brain Intro to Personality: 332 Jan 19, 2011 1 Thursday, February 10, 2011
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Questions of the Day: Has the human brain evolved speciFcally to be able to process complex social information? Yes! Do other social animals show evidence of evolved capacities re±ective of a predominantly social brain? yes! 2 Thursday, February 10, 2011
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Sources for the Lecture Cheney & Seyfarth (2007) Baboon metaphysics: The evolution of a social mind Gazzaniga (2008) Human: The science behind what makes us unique Relates to Chap 2 discussion of the evolution 3 Thursday, February 10, 2011
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Why is the human brain so large? 7 x larger than mammal our size; - our frontal cortex involved in consciousness and thinking is much larger in humans. - Primates have an association with size of frontal cortex and size of group that the species live. possible that the brain and frontal cortex has evolved because of a need to process information related to living successfully in larger groups Particular brain area that is enlarged; Functional brain scans when thinking of people; Other primates; brain size, frontal cortex and group size. 4 Thursday, February 10, 2011
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Comparison of Relative Brain Sizes 5 Thursday, February 10, 2011
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Examples of the social mind Random thoughts while at the YMCA. - ex. I go to YMCA a lot at night and he thinks about his work and other thinks but he cant help but notice the other regulars at the Y and thinking about them and even thinking about their relationships. When wife and him started going to the Y, they both noticed a very extremely Ft women so his wife and him referred to her as the Ft girl. she came with a guy and they Fgured out they were a couple. after 2 or 3 years the Ft guy stopped going with the Ft girl. 2 years out of the blue the Ft girl was there and the Ft guy was there too! so he went home to tell his wife. ex. someone would always come in exactly at 9, go on treadmill all dressed in black, he reads a book while on the same level. prof starts thinking about what he is like, etc. he started coming with a women dressed in black reading a book doing the stair-master. he told his wife about that also! it is just natural to spend time thinking about other people and their relationships Goleman’s observations in Social Intelligence (2007). Default activity Speed of processing and judgment - for almost all humans our default activity when we are not actively on task with something else is to be thinking about relationships; this is what we are wired to do - they have done experiments to see how quickly we can make judgments; making social judgments comes much faster than any other judgments 6 Thursday, February 10, 2011
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Examples of the social mind 7 Developmental indicators Infants orient toward: Human speech Human faces 3 year olds’ knowledge; 6 year olds’ knowledge; - Goldman noticed evidence that human infants are very prepared to process social information at a very young age. at 2-3 infants understand the relationships in their play-groups, etc.
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This note was uploaded on 03/01/2012 for the course PSYCH 332 taught by Professor Koestner during the Winter '11 term at McGill.

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Lecture 6 - Jan 19th - Group Life & the Evolution of...

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