How Our Bodies Do – and Don’t – Shape Our Minds

Individuals’ bodies and their abilities to act within their environments shape their perceptions of their surroundings, says psychological scientist Jessica Witt, Colorado State University. For example, hills appear steeper and distances appear farther to people who are overweight or tired. Witt discussed the psychophysics experiments she’s conducted to demonstrate this action-specific account of perception during one of four presentations in the Presidential Symposium titled Sense and Sensibility: How Our Bodies Do – and Don’t – Shape Our Minds. See the complete symposium, chaired by APS Immediate Past-President Susan Goldin-Meadow.   

Jessica K. Witt, Colorado State University
How Our Bodies Shape What We See

Amy J.C. Cuddy, Harvard University
Evaluating the Research on Postural Feedback

Susan Wagner Cook, The Iowa State University
How Our Hands Help Us Learn: The Role of Gesture in Cognitive Change 

Ted Supalla, Georgetown University
The Emergence of American Sign Language From Depiction and Embodiment 

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