12

The reptilian brain is the oldest part of the triune brain. And the triune brain is a unified account of brain function and brain evolution. The story goes like this. The brain can be divided into three sections: The reptilian brain, named so because it encompasses structures that did not change much from reptile to man. It includes the basal ganglia and ...


10

This question becomes more complicated if we think in terms of "emotions" (e.g., angry, happy, sad, afraid, etc.) than in terms of "affect" (positive and negative feelings, high and low arousal). I'll start with affect and move on to emotions. An affective state tags an object with a certain value--and it does so very quickly (e.g., Pham, 2007). For ...


9

There are (at least) two ways epigenetic traits are inherited. The important background in both cases is gene expression: there is a misconception that genes are for this or that, where the reality is that most traits come from an overlap of several genes expressing themselves in different ratios. As a simple example, consider two varieties of bird of the ...


9

It appears that there's been a lot of research done by USC professor Antonio Damasio on the importance of emotions. There's some fascinating case studies and interviews that are worth reading and listening to, but the short summary, as I understand it, is: Emotions are important because they end up directing reason. Without emotion, there are simply too ...


9

The two main folks in crying research (of whom I'm aware) are Ad Vingerhoets and Jonathan Rottenberg. They've (together and separately) published reviews of adult crying and crying across the lifespan, as well as empirical articles. The general impression they give is that we know very little about the neuropsychobiology of crying, given that crying has ...


7

Since this (excellent) question has been around for a while without any answer, I thought I'd give my two cents. I think we do this as a gesture of respect to the other person. We may fear that if we don't acknowledge them at all, it will come off as rude or arrogant. Maybe we fear that if we don't even look at the other person, we're basically pretending ...


7

The correlation between physical attractiveness and IQ is somewhere between insignificant and mildly positive, with a slightly higher correlation for men. The correlation between physical attractiveness and perceived intelligence is more significant. There are typically two approaches to explain the (albeit mild) correlation: Nature: From an evolutionary ...


6

Furthermore the feelings caused by the "nails on a chalkboard" sound do not at all trigger a fight-or-flight response or put me on edge as a loud noise or something that startles me does. If anything it is almost paralyzing, which seems counter to the evolutionary theory. Yes, I agree, it seems to, however what about the fainting goats? We could have traits ...


6

If non-human animals do have intelligence too, why is their intelligence not as advanced as humans? Notions like “advanced” or “better” really have no place in evolutionary thinking. Again, evolutionary fitness is about self-reproduction and success compared to whatever competition is present at any moment. There is no force “optimizing” species to meet ...


6

In my mind there are two main explanations of this kind of instinct behaviours. The first one is rooted in evolution. There are many examples of human innate behaviours which we can't explain e.g. when we see a lace or tape on the street we automatically jump and feel scared. Although we live in big city our brain associates the lace with a snake. It is an ...


6

What is the difference in the brains for animals capable of these great differences in sexual activity and what part of the brain is responsible for this? In my opinion is a matter of creativity and curiosity. Evolved species try to interact with their ambient in unusual ways, testing different approach to the same "problem" not only to satisfy primary ...


5

My answer to this question would be pretty straightforward. From a neurobiological standpoint, sex causes the release of various pair-bonding influencing hormones oxytocin, vasopressin and dopamine. These "feel good" hormones promote bonding and basically encourage the couple to stay together. The more the pair have sex, the more these hormones get ...


5

Let's first be clear that we didn't evolve from monkeys/apes/etc. That's a common misconception. Evolution states that we and monkeys/apes/etc. evolved from a common ancestor. Same with fish. If you go back far enough, we and fish share a common ancestor... we did not, however, evolve from today's Salmon or Macaque. That being said, the origin of ...


5

Are emotions really necessary for survival? No, not for survival; lots of living things around us without even a brain. Did emotions provide an evolutionary advantage in the past? The areas of the brain we associate with emotion were around far back in our evolutionary past - long before conscious reasoning appeared. Emotions are still an important part ...


5

What you are referring to is broadly known as baby schema. However, does this not only apply to human babies, but actually to most mammals which need (parental)care. Certain features in the mammal trigger the release of hormones, which in turn will/can trigger caretaking behaviour in humans. The hormone release is associated with the eye and head shape. The ...


5

This is not my field, but I gave it a quick search. This article seems to speak directly to this question, summarizing and comparing multiple theories to each other. In light of these theories, the article also seems to propose a synthesized theory of the avoidance. Formal citation below. Hope this helps! APA Citation Paul, R. A. (2011). Incest Avoidance: ...


5

Short answer Self-pity may not have any evolutionary benefit, but may instead be part of the social capabilities allowing to feel empathy. Empathy in turn is a crucial component in social interactions. The development of strong social skills in early Hominids is believed to have paved the way for evolution of Homo sapiens, arguably the most successful ...


5

I don't have a clear and definitive answer to give to you but first you should have a look about brain development (from:https://www.apa.org/education/k12/brain-function): And to the function associated to cerebellum: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4346664/ https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5243918/ And the number of neurons: ...


5

Hagfish, the most primitive vertebrates, do not appear to have a cerebellum, or if they do have one it is very primitive. Hagfish have most of the other structures found in vertebrate brains (including the telencephalon), so it is likely that the cerebellum actually evolved after the other five main brain regions. It is possible that the dorsal cochlear ...


4

In chimpz, we see stronger chimps beating up weaker chimps that have consensual sex. Basically sex is not a purely consensual matter among chimps. It's to the best interest of stronger males to prohibit weaker males from entering mating market especially if the weaker males are more attractive. In gorilla, sex is not about consent at all. The stronger ...


4

In my experience, physical trumps all. Even if you're blind, there is still smell. I saw a show (The Science of Sex Appeal) which documented an experiment where a group of men wore t-shirts while getting sweaty on treadmills. Once the garments were nice n nasty, they put them in jars and had women rate how turned on or off they were by smelling each jar. ...


4

Interestingly, the same question you asked has been asked since quite some time: The Act of Creation, 1964 - Arthur Koestler What is the survival value of the involuntary, simultaneous contraction of fifteen facial muscles associated with certain noises which are often irrepressible? Laughter is a reflex, but unique in that it serves no apparent ...


4

Primatologist Jill Pruetz at Iowa State University in Ames was observing savanna chimpanzees in Senegal and found that chimps there have mastered the first step in controlling fire. However there is this article from worldnewsdailyreport.com, which talks about a group of chimps in the Congo mastering the use of fire through experimentation and observation. ...


3

I think the treatment of the “Reptile Brain's” power given by Big Bang really sells it short. Your question immediately brought to my mind a 2009 profile by the Washington Post's Gene Weingarten of parents who leave their children in the car to die, all by accident. It's a long and difficult read, and it took me quite some time to dig it up again since I ...


3

There are some mentions of Evolutionary Game Theory in this Behavior & Brain Sciences (BBS) article by Andrew Colman (2003). The main article itself only has a brief section on EGT. However, like all BBS articles, there are short commentary articles after the main article. A few of these deal directly with EGT. I was able to find the relevant articles ...


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