Cultural neuroscience as a relation between scientific and humanistic studies

Monday, 03 de April de 2023

    We have known for a long time that people are social beings.

   Recently, the neural foundations underlying the processes of social cognition (Social Cognition and Interactions) have begun to be revealed. As a new field of study, Social or Cultural Neuroscience attempts to understand social behavior using different neuroimaging methodologies (EEG, Functional Connectivity EEG fMRI, NIRS).
   These advances have led us to a better understanding of the links between reason and emotion, action and perception, and the understanding of others (Social Interaction) and oneself (First Person Consciousness).

   From the point of view of Neuroscience, the study of social phenomena (Physiology and Behavior) gains new interest, since it would be possible to understand, under the scheme of neuroscientific research, socio-cultural phenomena (Cultural Neurosciences).

   Although early studies focused on stereotypes, self-knowledge, and theory of mind, today the focus has extended to the most varied areas of social psychology, including decision making (decision making), moral cognition (neuro-cognition), and neuropolitics (Neuropolitics).

   In the past, where these topics were only about the field of humanistic studies, Behavioral Sciences have shown clear flaws in addressing complex cultural behaviors due to the challenges involved in developing non-reductionist theories. Overly simplified explanations of complex cultural phenomenon not only give rise to a distorted description of them but also allow society, on the basis of these "evidences," to reinforce assumptions and moral prejudices present in the present moment.

   Social neuroscience seeks pluralistic explanations to try to show the contribution of neuronal, cognitive and emotional aspects of social behavior.

  The big challenge now lies in bringing together interdisciplinary groups to understand and predict cultural behaviors, leading to the development of explanations of social behavior with a multilevel approach ranging from cellular to cultural.


See also:


[1] La Neurociencia Social en Sudamérica. Una aproximación multinivel a perspectivas biológicas y sociales. Agustín Ibáñez.

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Rodrigo Oliveira

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