Post List

Social Science posts

(Modify Search »)

  • July 5, 2011
  • 09:49 AM

the big picture: automatic metaphor identification

by Chris in The Lousy Linguist

The recently popularized IARPA Metaphor Program piqued my curiosity, so I've been reviewing a variety of articles on contemporary approaches to automatic metaphor identification. I've read three articles so far and one thing is somewhat dissapointing: they all severely restrict the notion of metaphor to mean local metaphors within single sentences.They all pay considerable lip service to Lakoff & Johnson's seminal 1980 work Metaphors We Live By, taking as gospel the notion that metaphor is d........ Read more »

Xuri Tang, Weiguang Qu, Xiaohe Chen, & Shiwen Yu. (2010) Automatic Metaphor Recognition Based on Semantic Relation Patterns. International Conference on Asian Language Processing. info:/

  • July 5, 2011
  • 09:00 AM

Is it OK to Laugh at ‘Fat-Jokes’?

by Arya M. Sharma in Dr. Sharma's Obesity Notes

Who has not seen or heard fat jokes?
Usually a stereotypical depiction of a fat person highlighting their ‘funny’ relationship with food, their ‘facetious’ aversion to physical activity, their ‘farcical’ physical appearance, their ‘ludicrous’ clumsiness, their ‘jolly’ self-indulgence, their ‘entertaining’ lack of self-control - in short hilarious!
Not just the general public, but media, movie makers, comedians, [...]... Read more »

  • July 5, 2011
  • 08:00 AM

America: Land Of The Free, And Home Of The…Discontent?

by Melanie Tannenbaum in PsySociety

Many Americans celebrated July 4th with fireworks and barbecues. But how much thought did everyone give to the true spirit of Independence Day? Independence is one of those things that America is known for. In fact, “independent” tends to be … Continue reading →... Read more »

Hamedani, M.G., Markus, H.R., & Fu, A.S. (2011) My nation, my self: Divergent framings of America influence American selves. Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin, 350-364. info:/

  • July 5, 2011
  • 03:55 AM

Throwing Rocks From the Shores of the Cosmic Ocean

by Eric Michael Johnson in The Primate Diaries

I’m teaching my son to think like a scientist. He is two years old. We frequently go for walks together through the woods and along the coastlines of British Columbia where I allow his curiosity to run free. His current research project is throwing rocks into the ocean (this is just the exploratory phase mind [...]... Read more »

Michael Elazar. (2011) Projectile Motion and the Rejection of Superposition. Boston Studies in the Philosophy of Science, 169-187. info:/10.1007/978-94-007-1605-6_16

  • July 4, 2011
  • 07:02 AM

Images and ads create false memories

by Rita Handrich in The Jury Room

I have a vivid memory of a scene from very, very early childhood. Actually, infancy. My large sibling group is gathered around a Dutch Elm tree in our side yard. My father stands next to a black bear hung from the tree. My mother stands at the rear holding an infant wrapped in a blanket [...]

Related posts:What I should have said was nothing: The disaster of a false confession
“The glasses create a kind of unspoken nerd defense.”
Bummer! Our brains do decline with age…but there i........ Read more »

PRIYALI RAJAGOPAL, & NICOLE VOTOLATO MONTGOMERY. (2011) I Imagine, I Experience, I Like: The False Experience Effect. The Journal of Consumer Research. info:/

  • July 4, 2011
  • 12:41 AM

“Oh wad some power the giftie gie us To see oursel’s as others see us! It wad frae monie a blunder free us, And foolish notion”

by Bronwyn Thompson in Healthskills: Skills for Healthy Living

That quote from Robbie Burns. For such a long time it seems that pain research has focused only on the person having pain and less on the social context where the person is experiencing it. Pain is subjective, personal and private, and the only way I can determine whether someone is in pain is if … Read more... Read more »

  • July 3, 2011
  • 04:03 AM

The NeuROFLscience of Jokes

by Neuroskeptic in Neuroskeptic

A new paper in the Journal of Neuroscience investigates the neural basis of humour: Why Clowns Taste Funny.The authors note that some things are funny because of ambiguous words. For example:Q: Why don’t cannibals eat clowns?A: Because they taste funny!Previous studies, apparently, have shown that these kinds of jokes lead to activation in the lIFG (left inferior frontal gyrus), although it's also involved in processing ambiguity that's not funny, and indeed, language in general.In this study ........ Read more »

Bekinschtein TA, Davis MH, Rodd JM, & Owen AM. (2011) Why Clowns Taste Funny: The Relationship between Humor and Semantic Ambiguity. The Journal of neuroscience : the official journal of the Society for Neuroscience, 31(26), 9665-71. PMID: 21715632  

  • July 2, 2011
  • 12:21 PM

Community & Kinship at Catalhoyuk

by Cris Campbell in Genealogy of Religion

Strange things are afoot at Catalhoyuk (7400-5600 BCE), one of the earliest and most important Neolithic (i.e., sedentary and agricultural) sites known to archaeology. As I noted in Bones, Burials and Ancestors, mortuary practices at Catalhoyuk were unusual and often involved secondary burial in the floors of homes.

The assumption has always been that these were [...]... Read more »

Pilloud, Marin A., & Larsen, Clark Spencer. (2011) “Official” and “practical” kin: Inferring social and community structure from dental phenotype at Neolithic Çatalhöyük, Turkey. American Journal of Physical Anthropology. info:/10.1002/ajpa.21520

  • July 1, 2011
  • 08:50 PM

Q&A's with a Science Journalist: 'It's All Relativity'

by Paige Brown in From The Lab Bench

This week I am interviewing Louise Ogden, a science blogger on our own community blog Student Voices, which is hosted on Scitable by Nature Education. Louise also has her own science blog, It’s All Relativity, where she talks about space missions, climate change, exoplanets, solar eclipses, and much more! Louise is currently finishing up her Masters project at City University in London, which will earn her an (exciting!) degree in science journalism.... Read more »

Alison Wright. (2010) High-energy physics: Top of the class . Nature Physics, 6(644). info:/10.1038/nphys1783

  • July 1, 2011
  • 02:22 PM

Wilderness housing boom challenges conservation

by Tim De Chant in Per Square Mile

The housing boom may be over in the United States, but things look very different when you take a step back. Since the 1940s, housing has grown at about 20 percent each decade. And while the current recession may have slowed things down, we’ll have to start building more houses eventually if we’re to house [...]... Read more »

Radeloff, V., Stewart, S., Hawbaker, T., Gimmi, U., Pidgeon, A., Flather, C., Hammer, R., & Helmers, D. (2009) Housing growth in and near United States protected areas limits their conservation value. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 107(2), 940-945. DOI: 10.1073/pnas.0911131107  

  • July 1, 2011
  • 11:49 AM

And the Oscar goes to…Science!?

by Ben Good in B Good Science

Hollywood has never had a particularly good reputation for scientific accuracy. However, recently its science acumen has received a boost. It is currently the first time that the ‘reigning’ best actor and actress have been both been scientifically published. Colin Firth, has taken time out from swimming in country lakes and stuttering to co-author a [...]... Read more »

  • July 1, 2011
  • 07:02 AM

Simple Jury Persuasion: Should we channel Donna Reed and James Dean?

by Doug Keene in The Jury Room

Really?  Tell me it isn’t so.  Okay. We are not so sure about this one. We’ve spent lots of time telling you about research that talks about being likable, how to be persuasive to juries, and the importance of jurors seeing you as “like” them but still true to yourself. So now, we have new research saying that [...]

Related posts:Simple Jury Persuasion: Using attraction to your advantage
Simple Jury Persuasion: Tilt your head. (no kidding)
Simple Jury Persuasion: She reminds me of........ Read more »

  • July 1, 2011
  • 01:00 AM

When Diseases Talk: Tuberculosis and Its Impression on Literature

by Pranab Chatterjee in Scepticemia

A skiagram of the chest, showing miliary mottling, suggestive of Pulmonary Koch’s Disease in both lungs. there is also an opacity of the right upper lobe suggestive of active pulmonary disease. Patient was an 84 year old man, with a … Continue reading →... Read more »

DANIEL, T. (2004) The impact of tuberculosis on civilization. Infectious Disease Clinics of North America, 18(1), 157-165. DOI: 10.1016/S0891-5520(03)00096-5  

  • June 30, 2011
  • 05:16 PM

No effect of religion on creative accountancy and book fiddling

by Tom Rees in Epiphenom

The joy of accountancy is that it is no longer a simple game of adding up money in versus money out. Financial dealings these days are so complex that there is an almost infinite number of ways to hide or massage bad figures - if you want to, that is (think: Enron).

Now, the really fascinating thing is you can see this happening at an aggregate level. For example, you can look at how reporting of profits and losses vary from year to year, to see if accountants are smoothing the figures. You can........ Read more »

  • June 30, 2011
  • 11:49 AM

Remember, it's a Sidebar, Not a Bar Fight: Reason With, Not At, Your Adversary and Judge

by Persuasion Strategies in Persuasive Litigator

By Dr. Ken Broda-Bahm - The popular image of legal argument is most often a polished and professional presentation, made from a podium in front of a jury or judge. To those of us court watchers who read transcripts, it is clear that the biggest roll-up-your-sleeves-and-argue moments are often at sidebar - those conferences conducted with counsel huddled awkwardly by the bench and speaking either in hushed tones or over the white noise that is supposed to prevent a jury from listening in. Due to ........ Read more »

  • June 30, 2011
  • 09:00 AM

Obesity As a Social Diagnosis

by Arya M. Sharma in Dr. Sharma's Obesity Notes

As blogged before, obesity has long been defined by the World Health Organisation and other bodies as a chronic disease and even bears its own diagnostic code in the International Classification of Diseases (ICD-9: 278.00, ICD-10: E65).
Nevertheless, the notion of obesity as a ‘disease’ continues to be contested with proponents of the medical model being [...]... Read more »

Brown P, Lyson M, & Jenkins T. (2011) From diagnosis to social diagnosis. Social science . PMID: 21705128  

  • June 29, 2011
  • 04:18 PM

Through the Language Glass (Part 2) [reposted]

by Chris in The Lousy Linguist

This is part 2 of my review of Guy Deutscher's new book Through the Language Glass: Why the World Looks Different in Other Languages. This covers The Language Lens (129-249). Part 1 is here. This review will cover the scientific evidence that Deutscher reviews suggesting that language affects thought, and will end with a shocking proposal.To sum up my review of part one: meh. Okay, we've established that culture can influence language. This is a lot less controversial than Deutscher makes it see........ Read more »

Guy deutscher. (2010) Through the Language Glass: Why the World Looks Different in Other Languages. Metropolitan Books. info:/

  • June 29, 2011
  • 07:02 AM

Just because you’re pretty/handsome—don’t count on my vote!

by Rita Handrich in The Jury Room

Here’s some research that flies in the face of the common wisdom “what is pretty is good”. Most of us have seen (or heard about) the research that says physically attractive people  tend to make better initial impressions on others. It seems that there is some fine print that goes with that adage, and you [...]

Related posts:I never knew Hitler had three testicles…
“I can see it from both sides”
... Read more »

  • June 28, 2011
  • 11:00 AM

This is your brain in the city

by Tim De Chant in Per Square Mile

For a kid who spent much of his childhood outdoors—alternately splitting time between the wooded park down the street, my friends’ backyards, and a patch of countryside my parent’s tended—I have been spending a lot of time in rather large cities as an adult. Ever since I left college, I’ve lived in cities that count [...]... Read more »

Lederbogen, F., Kirsch, P., Haddad, L., Streit, F., Tost, H., Schuch, P., Wüst, S., Pruessner, J., Rietschel, M., Deuschle, M.... (2011) City living and urban upbringing affect neural social stress processing in humans. Nature, 474(7352), 498-501. DOI: 10.1038/nature10190  

  • June 28, 2011
  • 03:15 AM

Machine-Readable Psychiatry

by Neuroskeptic in Neuroskeptic

The idea of trawling the internet to discover what people think about medications is a fascinating one and I've covered some attempts to do this in the past, but it's not easy. And there's something worrying about where it could lead.A new paper aims to trawl medical records to work out how well depressed patients responded to treatment. The authors used Natural Language Processing or NLP (not that NLP) to interpret electronic medical records from over 5,000 patients treated at hospitals in New ........ Read more »

Perlis RH, Iosifescu DV, Castro VM, Murphy SN, Gainer VS, Minnier J, Cai T, Goryachev S, Zeng Q, Gallagher PJ.... (2011) Using electronic medical records to enable large-scale studies in psychiatry: treatment resistant depression as a model. Psychological medicine, 1-10. PMID: 21682950  

join us!

Do you write about peer-reviewed research in your blog? Use to make it easy for your readers — and others from around the world — to find your serious posts about academic research.

If you don't have a blog, you can still use our site to learn about fascinating developments in cutting-edge research from around the world.

Register Now

Research Blogging is powered by SMG Technology.

To learn more, visit