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CHAPTER 7 - Social Cognition
Cognitive Systems - Information Processing Meets Brain Science
Format: Book Chapter
Publication Year: 2006
Publisher: Academic Press
Place of Publication: London
Pages: 138 - 162
Source ID: shanti-sources-72201
Abstract: The term cognition refers to unconscious mechanisms in the mind that bring about representations. Social cognition may be defined as any cognitive process that involves other people. These processes can be involved in social interactions at a group level or on a one-to-one basis. This chapter identifies the scope of social cognition and recent research on the mechanisms of social cognition and its component processes in the brain. The study of social cognition uses the same measures as any other area of cognitive science. Some measures are especially helpful in the study of communication and emotion. These include: autonomic responses, brain activity, neuronal activity, scalp electrical impulses, cerebral blood flow, and non-verbal behavior. Mechanisms of social cognition are thought to be crucial for reading faces, detecting eye gaze, recognizing emotional expressions, perceiving biological motion, and detecting goal-directed actions and agents. This chapter further discusses how pathology affects social cognition. It also poses some burning questions from interactions in everyday life.