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Exp Psychol. 2013;60(4):255-9. doi: 10.1027/1618-3169/a000194.

When body and mind are talking. Interoception moderates embodied cognition.

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Department of Psychology, Utrecht University, The Netherlands.


Recent research on so-called embodied cognitions strengthens the current view that the body and the mind cannot be separated in producing cognitions. But how and when does the body talk to the mind? Drawing on the notion that bodily processes are transformed into mental action through experiences, it is argued that embodied cognitions should be moderated by interindividual differences in the sensitivity to stimuli originating inside of the body, that is, by interoception. In line with these assumptions, two experiments demonstrate that the embodiment of weight and softness in value judgments and person impressions is moderated by interoception as assessed by a body-awareness questionnaire (Experiment 1) and a heartbeat perception task (Experiment 2). Taken together, these findings strongly speak to the notion that bodily processes and the experience thereof play an important role in embodiment, thereby extending previous research above and beyond the mere demonstration of body-mind interactions.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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