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Cognitive mechanisms for responding to mimicry from others

Hale, J; Hamilton, AF; (2016) Cognitive mechanisms for responding to mimicry from others. Neuroscience & Biobehavioral Reviews , 63 pp. 106-123. 10.1016/j.neubiorev.2016.02.006. Green open access

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Abstract

Compared to our understanding of neurocognitive processes involved producing mimicry, the downstream consequences of being mimicked are less clear. A wide variety of positive consequences of mimicry, such as liking and helping, have been reported in behavioural research. However, an in-depth review suggests the link from mimicry to liking and other positive outcomes may be fragile. Positive responses to mimicry can break down due to individual factors and social situations where mimicry may be unexpected. It remains unclear how the complex behavioural effects of mimicry relate to neural systems which respond to being mimicked. Mimicry activates regions associated with mirror properties, self-other processing and reward. In this review, we outline three potential models linking these regions with cognitive consequences of being mimicked. The models suggest that positive downstream consequences of mimicry may depend upon self-other overlap, detection of contingency or low prediction error. Finally, we highlight limitations with traditional research designs and suggest alternative methods for achieving highly ecological validity and experimental control. We also highlight unanswered questions which may guide future research.

Type: Article
Title: Cognitive mechanisms for responding to mimicry from others
Location: United States
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.1016/j.neubiorev.2016.02.006
Publisher version: http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.neubiorev.2016.02.006
Language: English
Additional information: Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
Keywords: Imitation, Mimicry, Neurocognitive models, Nonverbal behaviour
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 > Clinical, Edu and Hlth Psychology
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/1480501
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