“We have a special brain system that lets us think about what other people are thinking. This system takes a long time to develop, slowly throughout the course of childhood and into early adolescence. And even in adulthood, differences in this brain region can explain differences among adults in how we think about and judge other people.” – Rebecca Saxe
Rebecca Saxe studies a region of the brain whose function is to think about other people’s thoughts, the Right Temporo-Parietal Junction (RTPJ). Saxe and her lab are doing some very interesting research into how the RTPJ develops in childhood and adolescence and how differences in activation of the RTPJ in adulthood can account for differences in moral judgment. In the talk below, Saxe explores this relationship between our capacity to think about other people’s thoughts and the moral judgments we make about others’ actions.