Brain Scan MAY detect bigotry.

Discussion in 'Health and medical' started by Ilsa9, Dec 16, 2003.

  1. Ilsa9

    Ilsa9 Guest

    Interesting, it appears that bigotry may exhaust the brain, impairing cognitive function. I wonder
    if this could explain aspects of Jan Drew, Debbee, & Rod's behavior.

    from: http://www.ananova.com/news/story/sm_838829.html?menu=news.latestheadlines

    Brain scan 'identifies race bias among white people'

    A brain scan that can apparently root out racists has been developed by scientists.

    The technique was used on white volunteers shown photographs of black individuals.

    In those with racist tendencies, a surge of activity was seen in part of the brain that controls
    thoughts and behaviour. Scientists believe this reflected volunteers' attempts to to curb their
    latent racism.

    After interacting with real black individuals, the same group performed poorly in a task designed to
    test mental resources.

    The American researchers concluded that harbouring racial prejudice, even unintentionally, stirred
    up an inner struggle that exhausted the brain.

    Dr Jennifer Richeson, assistant professor of psychological and brain sciences at Dartmouth College,
    Hanover, New Hampshire, said: "We were surprised to find brain activity in response to faces of
    black individuals predicted how research participants performed on cognitive tasks after actual
    interracial interactions."

    The scientists first measured the racial bias of 30 white individuals using a standard technique.

    Volunteers were given a computer test to record the ease with which they associated with white and
    black racial groups with concepts that were positive or negative. Those with higher levels of
    racial bias took longer to associate white people with negative concepts and black people with
    positive concepts.

    The study participants were then asked to interact with either a white or a black individual.
    Afterwards, they underwent a test which involved making a mental effort to inhibit instinctive
    responses.

    The scan experiment employed a technique called functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) to map
    brain activity.

    Story filed: 13:54 Sunday 16th November 2003
     
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