Tag Archives: face

A cultural look at moral purity: wiping the face clean

Toronto, ON – Moral people have a pure heart. Immoral acts feel dirty. Expressions that describe morality in terms of purity abound in English and numerous other languages. The idea is rooted in religions around the world as well. For example, ritual purification of the physical body symbolizes moral purification, from baptism of Christianity and mikvah of Judaism, to ablution of Islam and Buddhism, to bathing in the Ganges of Hinduism and amrit of Sikhism. Across human societies, bodily purity seems deeply intertwined with morality. Does it imply that the morality-purity link is a universal psychological phenomenon? (more…)

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Mitt Romney’s Face Looks Different to Republicans and Democrats

Political opinions can influence how people perceive a candidate’s facial characteristics  

COLUMBUS, Ohio – A new study suggests that political bias can influence how people perceive the facial characteristics of a presidential candidate – even after seeing his face on TV thousands of times.

The study of Ohioans immediately before and after the 2012 presidential election showed that people’s mental representation of Republican candidate Mitt Romney’s face differed based on their political persuasion. (more…)

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Why Older Adults Become Fraud Victims More Often

Brain shows diminished response to untrustworthiness, UCLA scientists report

Why are older people especially vulnerable to becoming victims of fraud? A new UCLA study indicates that an important clue may lie in a particular region of the brain that influences the ability to discern who is honest and who is trying to deceive us.

Older people, more than younger adults, may fail to interpret an untrustworthy face as potentially dishonest, the study shows. The reason for this, the UCLA life scientists found, seems to be that a brain region called the anterior insula, which is linked to disgust and is important for discerning untrustworthy faces, is less active in older adults. (more…)

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Crows React to Threats in Human-like Way

Cross a crow and it’ll remember you for years.

Crows and humans share the ability to recognize faces and associate them with negative, as well as positive, feelings. The way the brain activates during that process is something the two species also appear to share, according to new research being published this week.

“The regions of the crow brain that work together are not unlike those that work together in mammals, including humans,” said John Marzluff, University of Washington professor of environmental and forest sciences. “These regions were suspected to work in birds but not documented until now. (more…)

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Face to Face

Research finds infants classify faces by gender, race

Long before babies can talk — even before they can sit up on their own — they are mentally forming categories for objects and animals in a way that, for example, sets apart squares from triangles and cats from dogs, psychologists say.

Now, research conducted by the University of Delaware’s Paul Quinn, professor of psychology, and others indicates that babies as young as 3 months are also classifying faces by race and gender, showing a visual preference for the category they see most often in their daily lives, and that by 9 months they have difficulty recognizing the faces of people from less-familiar races. (more…)

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