Emotional brains ‘physically different’ from rational ones

Jun 29, 2015

by Science Daily

Researchers at Monash University have found physical differences in the brains of people who respond emotionally to others’ feelings, compared to those who respond more rationally, in a study published in the journal NeuroImage.

The work, led by Robert Eres from the University’s School of Psychological Sciences, pinpointed correlations between grey matter density and cognitive and affective empathy. The study looked at whether people who have more brain cells in certain areas of the brain are better at different types of empathy.

“People who are high on affective empathy are often those who get quite fearful when watching a scary movie, or start crying during a sad scene. Those who have high cognitive empathy are those who are more rational, for example a clinical psychologist counselling a client,” Mr Eres said.


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4 comments on “Emotional brains ‘physically different’ from rational ones

  • @OP – “People who are high on affective empathy are often those who get quite fearful when watching a scary movie, or start crying during a sad scene. Those who have high cognitive empathy are those who are more rational, for example a clinical psychologist counselling a client,” Mr Eres said.

    Oh dear!
    More scientists claiming that we are not all politically correctly fitted with unibrains, AND that more emotional people cry when encountering scary or fearful situations!

    Quick! Call out the thought police and demand that they recant and apologise immediately!!!

    https://www.richarddawkins.net/2015/06/tim-hunt-ive-been-hung-out-to-dry-they-havent-even-bothered-to-ask-for-my-side-of-affairs/
    As he reveals to the Observer, reaction to his remarks about the alleged lachrymose tendencies of female researchers has virtually finished off the 72-year-old Nobel laureate’s career as a senior scientific adviser.

    @OP link – The results showed that people with high scores for affective empathy had greater grey matter density in the insula, a region found right in the ‘middle’ of the brain. Those who scored higher for cognitive empathy had greater density in the midcingulate cortex — an area above the corpus callosum, which connects the two hemispheres of the brain.

    Different wiring of the brain!!! – Who would have thunk it????

    https://www.richarddawkins.net/2015/06/tim-hunt-ive-been-hung-out-to-dry-they-havent-even-bothered-to-ask-for-my-side-of-affairs/#li-comment-181132
    .Females have a bigger connecting area (the corpus callosum) between the two hemispheres of the brain. They tend to use both sides of the brain for a particular task more frequently than do males.

    Differences begin before birth.

    Girls and boys appear to have different developmental timelines, due in part to the differences in their brains. “For example,” Deak notes, “most girls are born with language processing neurons on both sides of the brain, but most males have them only on the right side.”



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  • I’ve often wondered why some people seem to be more prone towards superstitious thinking while others seem to be more resistant to it. If these physical changes are really there in follow-up studies then it will be interesting to learn if the changes are present due to genetics or are they a secondary effect caused by different thinking patterns.

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  • OH NOOO!!! This means my wife will probably never think rationally enough to quit her superstitions; she cries when she hears children singing, among a long list of other things. Before any rationally minded, empathetic, feminists berate me, I must say that she is from N.W. Ar. and has been in church her whole life……. the indoctrination has set in.



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