Pain facial expression: Individual variability undermines the specific adaptationist account

Behavioral and Brain Sciences 25 (4):461-462 (2002)
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Abstract

The proposal that there are specific adaptations for the expression and detection of pain appears premature on both conceptual and empirical grounds. We discuss criteria for the validation of a pain facial expression. We also describe recent findings from our lab on coping styles and pain expression, which illustrate the importance of considering individual differences when proposing evolutionary explanations.

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Chris Harris
University of California, San Diego

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