What does it mean “to know by heart”?

heart_illustrationThere’s an intriguing recent study showing that people’s sense of whether faces are familiar to them or not is affected by physiological signals from the heart. The experimental subjects were wired up to a heart monitor and during the facial memory test, some of the faces were presented at the precise moment that the heart had just pumped a burst of blood into the arteries (systole phase), while the other faces were presented while the heart was relaxing (diastole phase). Subjects were more likely to say that they had seen the faces before (whether they had or not) if the faces were presented during the systole rather than the diastole phase. Read more about the study here.

Yet another thought provoking example of how bodies inform minds.

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About Alison Kidd

Research Psychologist
This entry was posted in Psychology, Uncategorized and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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