Wednesday, July 18, 2012

(cold) fish without faces

I guess this has been out for over a year now, but just the other day my mom hipped me to this study about botox, empathy, and "embodied cognition".

"people who have had Botox injections are physically unable to mimic emotions of others. This failure to mirror the faces of those they are watching or talking to robs them of the ability to understand what people are feeling, the study says.

The toxin might interfere with 'embodied cognition,' the way in which facial feedback helps people perceive emotion. According to the theory in the study, a listener unconsciously imitates another person’s expression. This mimicry then generates a signal from the person’s face to his or her brain. Finally, the signal enables the listener to understand the other person’s meaning or intention."

Here's a link to a pdf of the study itself.

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