April 23, 2018

The Brain is Social by Default

Matthew Lieberman, University of California, Los Angeles

Our social cognitive abilities can either be thought of like a piece of software that is written on top of existing general purpose hardware or as dedicated machinery of its own. I will present six lines of research from my lab that examine the ways in which our brain is fundamentally social rather than it being one more application of more general domain-free cognitive mechanisms. In addition, some of these lines of research will present data demonstrating that even when the brain is at rest it is actively preparing and learning from the social world.