We question the idea that the mirror neuron system is the substrate of social affordances perception, and we suggest that most of the activity seen in the parietal and premotor cortex of the human brain is independent of mirroring activity as characterized in macaques, but rather reflects a process of one's own action specification in response to social signals.
Niedenthal et al. postulate that eye contact with the expresser of an emotion automatically initiates embodied simulation. Our commentary explores the generality of such an eye contact effect for emotions other than happiness. Based on the appraisal theory of emotion, we propose that embodied simulation may be reinforced by mutual or averted gaze as a function of emotional context.