Psychology

Gene Expression

Tag archives for Psychology

Face recognition not correlated with IQ

Heritability of the Specific Cognitive Ability of Face Perception: What makes one person socially insightful but mathematically challenged, and another musically gifted yet devoid of a sense of direction? Individual differences in general cognitive ability are thought to be mediated by “generalist genes” that affect many cognitive abilities similarly without specific genetic influences on particular…

Are women getting better looking?

Update: The author of the paper clears up confusions. Update: Here’s the paper. End Update The British media is abuzz with another paper from Satoshi Kanazawa, the evolutionary psychologist who has great marketing savvy. I can’t find the study online anyway, so here is the Times Online: In a study released last week, Markus Jokela,…

We know that dogs can read human faces, it turns out that babies can infer the meaning of different dog barks: New research shows babies have a handle on the meaning of different dog barks – despite little or no previous exposure to dogs. Infants just 6 months old can match the sounds of an…

Alex Tabarrok points me to a new paper on the effects of Toxoplasma gondii, Increased incidence of traffic accidents in Toxoplasma-infected military drivers and protective effect RhD molecule revealed by a large-scale prospective cohort study: We confirmed, using for the first time a prospective cohort study design, increased risk of traffic accidents in Toxoplasma-infected subjects…

Staring at “freaks”

Why We Stare, Even When We Don’t Want To: “When a face is distorted, we have no pattern to match that,” Rosenberg said. “All primates show this [staring] at something very different, something they have not evolved to see. They need to investigate further. ‘Are they one of us or not?’ In other species, when…

Optimism across the world

People By Nature Are Universally Optimistic, Study Shows: Data from the Gallup World Poll drove the findings, with adults in more than 140 countries providing a representative sample of 95 percent of the world’s population. The sample included more than 150,000 adults. Eighty-nine percent of individuals worldwide expect the next five years to be as…

Superfreaks about the face

A few years ago I commented a fair amount on the topic of prosopagnosia, face blindness. Turns out that ~2% of the population can’t really recognize faces, and this is a cryptic trait as many of these individuals have developed compensatory tendencies so that people don’t know. Not only that, but there seems to be…

Bryan Caplan notes & argues: If you take a closer look at BG research, though, you’ll notice something interesting. Virtually every BG study partitions variance into three sources: genes, shared family environment, and non-shared environment. Typical estimates are something like 40-50% for genes, 0-10% for shared family environment, and 50% for non-shared environment. And what…

Parents don’t matter that much

Jonah’s interview of Judith Rich Harris is much recommended. Clearly related to my post on adoptive parents.

Via Dienekes, Differential parental investment in families with both adopted and genetic children: Stepchildren are abused, neglected and murdered at higher rates than those who live with two genetically related parents. Daly and Wilson used kin selection theory to explain this finding and labeled the phenomenon “discriminative parental solicitude.” I examined discriminative parental solicitude in…