Curiosities

image credit Loren Kerns

image credit Loren Kerns

Listen

We do a lot of things that at first seem like a natural reaction to the situation at hand. We laugh, we cry, we yawn and stretch. But what's going on in our brains when we do these things is very different from what we think we're doing. For example, scientists claim that laughter is the evolution of the sound of panting during play...huh huh huh became ha ha ha. And "ha" is a universal language.

When Alice says curiouser and curiouser she was talking about Wonderland, but she may well have been talking about our brain. This week, just like Alice, we're going to slide down a rabbit hole of our own to investigate some of the curious behaviours wired into our brains. Yawning...riots of laughter... scratching... they're all a bit odd when you think about them. 

We had some curious conversations with Dr. Alan Kingstone, Professor of psychology at the University of British Columbia, neuroscientist Dr. Yves de Koninck of the University of Laval, and Dr. Robert Provine, neuroscientist and Professor of psychology at the University of Baltimore, Maryland. Ranging from the evolution of curious mammalian behaviours that we've inherited to the neural functioning of them in the brain, we look for weird this week on Think About It. 
 

To encourage thoughtful and respectful conversations, first and last names will appear with each submission to CBC/Radio-Canada's online communities (except in children and youth-oriented communities). Pseudonyms will no longer be permitted.

By submitting a comment, you accept that CBC has the right to reproduce and publish that comment in whole or in part, in any manner CBC chooses. Please note that CBC does not endorse the opinions expressed in comments. Comments on this story are moderated according to our Submission Guidelines. Comments are welcome while open. We reserve the right to close comments at any time.

Submission Policy

Note: The CBC does not necessarily endorse any of the views posted. By submitting your comments, you acknowledge that CBC has the right to reproduce, broadcast and publicize those comments or any part thereof in any manner whatsoever. Please note that comments are moderated and published according to our submission guidelines.