Saturday, April 02, 2011

Cognitive Neuroscience Society Annual Meeting

The 18th Annual CNS Meeting is being held in San Francisco April 2-5, 2011. Grueling 11 hr days of posters and talks (plus late night revelry) await the most eager attendees with the greatest stamina. Symposia include panels of Psychological Constructionists, Angular Gyrus Devotees, Fans of Human Consumption, Brainy Bilinguals, and Multimodal Person Perceivers.

The 2011 Program is available for download as a PDF. Wondering about those Psychological Constructionists? I know I was...

Symposium Session 1

Sunday, April 3, 10:00 am - 12:00 pm, Grand Ballroom A

Ingredients of the Mind: A Psychological Constructionist Approach to Cognitive Neuroscience

Chair: Kristen Lindquist, Harvard University; Massachusetts General Hospital; Martinos Center for Biomedical Imaging
Co-Chair: Lisa Feldman Barrett, Northeastern University; Harvard Medical School; Massachusetts General Hospital; Martinos Center for Biomedical Imaging
Speakers: Kristen Lindquist, Tor Wager, William Cunningham, Alexandra Touroutoglou

Cognitive neuroscience has traditionally sought the distinct neural bases of psychological categories like “thought,” “attention,” “memory” and “emotion.” Yet growing evidence suggests that the mechanisms underlying these psychological categories are not as distinct as once thought. According to a psychological constructionist framework, complex mental categories are phenomena constructed from more basic psychological ingredients that correspond to functional networks in the brain. In this symposium, we will explore how a psychological constructionist approach to the mind can inform cognitive neuroscience. The four talks presented will be empirical examples of a psychological construction approach. Kristen Lindquist will present meta-analytic data demonstrating that emotion experiences and perceptions are comprised of activity in functional groupings associated with affect, categorization, language and executive attention. Next, Tor Wager will present findings demonstrating that the same basic brain system is involved in functions central to the “self,” pain, and negative emotion. William Cunningham will next demonstrate how amygdala activity is dynamically shaped by the goals of a perceiver. Finally, Alexandra Touroutoglou will next present evidence demonstrating that both attention and emotion experience have a common ingredient in the anterior insula.

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