Friday, April 28, 2006

Steven Pinker//The Blank Slate

I attended a talk by Steven Pinker last evening on his book 'The Blank Slate'. I've been curious about his research for a long it was a lot of fun hearing his theories. Needless to say, the book has been added to my reading list.

Pinker argued against the 'tabula rasa' models of psychology and how the human mind is indeed not the proverbial blank slate. He's from the evolutionary psychology side of thought. For example, he explained how twins separated at birth and brought up by very different set of parents, end up having the same qualities and mannerisms. So if the brain was indeed a blank slate, their mannerims should depend on their experiences, and the twins should be very different from each other as their upbringings were different. Pinker argued how the 'tabula rasa' thought process conveniently forgets about 'genes'. According to evolutionary psychology, a human brain/soul is shaped by genes, culture etc. So this would explain why, the twins even though brought up differently, end up being similar. Cos they share genes!!

One of the many funny anecdotes was when Pinker discussed his theories on the attraction of sexes and agreed that it's a very strange occurence. He talked about how his friend always said that one should not get married to someone cos of his/her cute lip or nose. Instead, one should marry their best friend. You like them...they're's the best solution.

What made me laugh about this? According to this theory, if I were to get married today....I would have to marry best friend from the male of the species.
*2 seconds to process thought*
... know I love you dearly....but you're laughing your ass off as well as you read this.


Songs of the day:
~'Mujhpe tufan uthaye' from Tehzeeb OST
~'Black Friday' OST

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