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The functions of imitative behaviour in humans

Farmer, H; Ciaunica, A; Hamilton, AFDC; (2018) The functions of imitative behaviour in humans. Mind & Language , 33 (4) pp. 378-396. 10.1111/mila.12189. Green open access

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Abstract

This article focuses on the question of the function of imitation and whether current accounts of imitative function are consistent with our knowledge about imitation's origins. We first review theories of imitative origin concluding that empirical evidence suggests that imitation arises from domain‐general learning mechanisms. Next, we lay out a selective account of function that allows normative functions to be ascribed to learned behaviours. We then describe and review four accounts of the function of imitation before evaluating the relationship between the claim that imitation arises out of domain‐general learning mechanisms and theories of the function of imitation.

Type: Article
Title: The functions of imitative behaviour in humans
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.1111/mila.12189
Publisher version: http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/mila.12189
Language: English
Additional information: © 2018 The Authors. Mind & Language published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd. This is an open access article under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits use, distribution and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.
Keywords: Social Sciences, Linguistics, Psychology, Experimental, Psychology, imitation, social cognition, function, mimicry, simulation, social learning, MIRROR NEURONS, LANGUAGE COMPREHENSION, OVER-IMITATION, YOUNG-CHILDREN, EYE CONTACT, MIMICRY, MECHANISMS, INFANTS, SYSTEM, FACE
UCL classification: UCL
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Brain Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Brain Sciences > Div of Psychology and Lang Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Brain Sciences > Div of Psychology and Lang Sciences > Institute of Cognitive Neuroscience
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/10057561
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