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Neurosci Biobehav Rev. 2010 Mar;34(4):513-27. doi: 10.1016/j.neubiorev.2009.10.008. Epub 2009 Oct 24.

Standing up for the body. Recent progress in uncovering the networks involved in the perception of bodies and bodily expressions.

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Cognitive and Affective Neuroscience Laboratory, Tilburg University, P.O. Box 90153, 5000LE, Tilburg, The Netherlands.


Recent studies of monkeys and humans have identified several brain regions that respond to bodies. Researchers have so far mainly addressed the same questions about bodies and bodily expressions that are already familiar from three decades of face and facial expression studies. Our present goal is to review behavioral, electrophysiological and neurofunctional studies on whole body and bodily expression perception against the background of what is known about face perception. We review all currently available evidence in more detail than done so far, but we also argue for a more theoretically motivated comparison of faces and bodies that reflects some broader concerns than only modularity or category specificity of faces or bodies.

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