Fabrice Clément

Fabrice Clément
Université de Neuchâtel | UniNE · Cognitive Science Centre

PhD

About

86
Publications
20,493
Reads
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Introduction
As an anthropologist, I am fascinated by what make us humans. This quest led me to by involved in philosophy, sociology and psychology, disciplines that I am trying to bring together under the convenient "umbrella" of cognitive science. My conviction is that anthropology is right to insist on the importance of culture to understand human form of life; but that does not imply to get rid of our biological heritage. On the contrary: to inherit a culture, one needs a complex biological structure that will enable us to become part of an given social group. It is then time for anthropologists to integrate the community of biologists, neuroscientists, and psychologists, as we are trying to do in the Cognitive Science Centre at the University of Neuchâtel (Switzerland).
Additional affiliations
November 2010 - present
Université de Neuchâtel
Position
  • Professor (Full)

Publications

Publications (86)
Article
Full-text available
Cognitive models of social anxiety propose that socially anxious individuals engage in excessive self-focusing attention when entering a social situation. In the present study, speech anxiety was induced to socially anxious and control participants. Event-related potentials were recorded while participants performed a perceptual judgment task using...
Article
Full-text available
Research over the past decades has demonstrated the explanatory power of emotions, feelings, motivations, moods, and other affective processes when trying to understand and predict how we think and behave. In this consensus article, we ask: has the increasingly recognized impact of affective phenomena ushered in a new era, the era of affectivism?
Article
Debates concerning social learning in the behavioral and the developmental cognitive sciences have largely ignored the literature on social influence in the affective sciences despite having arguably the same object of study. We argue that this is a mistake and that no complete model of social learning can exclude an affective aspect. In addition,...
Preprint
Full-text available
Debates concerning social learning in the behavioural and the developmental cognitive sciences have largely ignored the literature on social influence in the affective sciences despite having arguably the same object of study. We argue that this is a mistake and that no complete model of social learning can exclude an affective aspect. In addition,...
Article
Full-text available
Interactions between males and females often display a power imbalance. Men tend to adopt more dominant physical postures, lead conversations more, and are more likely to impose their will on women than vice versa. Furthermore, social representations typically associate males with a higher power than females. However, little is known about how thos...
Preprint
Full-text available
From their very origins, psychology and sociology have each tended to follow their own path without taking the other into consideration. This mutual indifference is particularly problematic when studying processes of socialization. On the developmental psychological side, there is perhaps a tendency to consider the child as a ‘lone explorer’, while...
Article
Although we applaud the general aims of the target article, we argue that Affective Social Learning completes TTOM by pointing out how emotions can provide another route to acquiring culture, a route which may be quicker, more flexible, and even closer to an axiological definition of culture (less about what is, and more about what should be) than...
Article
While we applaud the general aims of the target article, we argue that Affective Social Learning completes TTOM by pointing out how emotions can provide another route to acquiring culture, a route which may be quicker, more flexible and even closer to an axiological definition of culture (less about what is, and more about what should be) than TTOM...
Article
Full-text available
In recent years, neuroscience has begun to investigate brain responses to social stimuli. To date, however, the effects of social feedback on attentional and perceptual processes remain unclear. In this study, participants were asked to judge the hues of distinct, or ambiguously coloured stimuli, and to indicate their confidence ratings. Alleged so...
Chapter
Affective Social Learning is a relatively new concept that needed teasing out. In this introductory chapter, we set out what we meant by the notion as we initially set it out in previous versions. The goal here is to provide the reader with the background to the concept and indeed to the following chapters and, ultimately, to use as a starting poin...
Book
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Written by experts in comparative, developmental, social, cognitive and cultural psychology, this book introduces the novel concept of affective social learning to help explain why what matters to us, matters to us. In the same way that social learning describes how we observe other people's behaviour to learn how to use a particular object, affect...
Chapter
Affective social learning is a novel concept that aims to conceptualise the transmission of social value. Within the pages of this volume, this simple idea and our presentation of it has already inspired researchers from different disciplines to address what this might mean for their research and for affective science more generally. In this conclu...
Article
Group membership is a strong driver of everyday life in humans, influencing similarity judgments, trust choices, and learning processes. However, its ontogenetic development remains to be understood. This study investigated how group membership, age, sex, and identification with a team influenced 39- to 60-month-old children (N = 94) in a series of...
Article
Full-text available
Bringing together perspectives is rarely an easy task. By assembling researchers from cognitive and cultural traditions to discuss their reciprocal research in the field of psychology of religion, we thought that we will end up with an ecumenical conclusion, everyone being convinced that the other perspective will enrich her or his approach in the...
Article
Full-text available
Over 6 decades ago, experimental evidence from social psychology revealed that individuals could alter their responses in perceptual judgement tasks if they differed from the prevailing view emitted by a group of peers. Responses were thus modulated to agree with the opinion of the social group. An open question remains whether such changes actuall...
Article
Full-text available
Humans cooperate with unrelated individuals to an extent that far outstrips any other species. We also display extreme variation in decisions about whether to cooperate or not, and the mechanisms driving this variation remain an open question across the behavioural sciences. One candidate mechanism underlying this variation in cooperation is the ev...
Data
Literature review of overimitation studies, descriptive results and statistical models
Article
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Children are skilful at acquiring tool-using skills by faithfully copying relevant and irrelevant actions performed by others, but poor at innovating tools to solve problems. Five- to twelve-year-old urban French and rural Serbian children (N = 208) were exposed to a Hook task; a jar containing a reward in a bucket and a pipe cleaner as potential r...
Article
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While we know that the degree to which humans are able to cooperate is unrivalled by other species, the variation humans actually display in their cooperative behaviour has yet to be fully explained. This may be because research based on experimental game-theoretical studies neglects fundamental aspects of human sociality and psychology, namely soc...
Article
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In our attempt to distinguish two types of social appraisal, we (a) clarify the “knower–learner” relationship in affective social learning, (b) underline the important role that affective observation may have in acculturation processes, and (c) highlight some potential consequences for the recent debate on the benefits of child-directed (ostensive)...
Article
Full-text available
A new wave of studies on emotion recognition encourages researchers to look beyond the face as the sole source of pertinent information. One study has proposed that, while there is overwhelming evidence that negative emotions may be differentiated in static facial expressions, postural information is needed to differentiate positive emotions such a...
Article
Full-text available
Social learning is likely to include affective processes: it is necessary for newcomers to discover what value to attach to objects, persons, and events in a given social environment. This learning relies largely on the evaluation of others’ emotional expressions. This study has two objectives. Firstly, we compare two closely related concepts that...
Article
Full-text available
Two experiments with preschoolers (36 to 78 months) and 8-year-old children (Experiment 1, N = 173; Experiment 2, N = 132) investigated the development of children's resource distribution in dominance contexts. On the basis of the distributive justice literature, 2 opposite predictions were tested. Children could match resource allocation with the...
Article
Full-text available
Recent research has shown that young children rely on social cues to evaluate testimony. For instance, they prefer to endorse testimony provided by a consensual group than by a single dissenter. Given that dominance is pervasive in children’s social environment, it can be hypothesized that children also use dominance relations in their selection of...
Article
Because communication can be abused by senders, it is not inherently stable. One way of stabilizing communication is for senders to commit to their messages. If a sender is committed to a message, she is willing to incur a cost (direct or reputational) if the message is found to be unreliable. This cost provides a reason for receivers to accept mes...
Article
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The objective of this article is to investigate the way children weigh conventional rules against desires when considering how a group will behave. To do so, two experiments involving a prediction task in which desires were pitted against conventional rules were presented to three- to five-year-old children. In Experiment 1, four scenarios were est...
Article
Several studies have investigated how preschoolers weigh social cues against epistemic cues when taking testimony into account. For instance, one study showed that 4- and 5-year-olds preferred to endorse the testimony of an informant who had the same gender as the children; by contrast, when the gender cue conflicted with an epistemic cue-past reli...
Article
Full-text available
Some studies, so far limited in number, suggest the existence of procedural metacognition in young children, that is, the practical capacity to monitor and control one’s own cognitive activity in a given task. The link between procedural metacognition and false belief understanding is currently under theoretical discussion. If data with primates se...
Article
Recent studies have demonstrated that young children use past reliability and consensus to endorse object labels. Until now, no study has investigated how children weigh these two cues when they are in conflict. The two experiments reported here were designed to explore whether any initial preference for information provided by a consensual group w...
Article
Full-text available
There is good evidence that some ape behaviors can be transmitted socially and that this can lead to group-specific traditions. However, many consider animal traditions, including those in great apes, to be fundamentally different from human cultures, largely because of lack of evidence for cumulative processes and normative conformity, but perhaps...
Article
Full-text available
Recently, a growing number of studies have investigated the cues used by children to selectively accept testimony. In parallel, several studies with adults have shown that the fluency with which information is provided influences message evaluation: adults evaluate fluent information as more credible than dysfluent information. It is therefore plau...
Article
Full-text available
A series of four experiments investigated preschoolers’ abilities to make sense of dominance relations. Experiments 1 and 2 showed that preschoolers are able, as early as 3 years old, to infer dominance not only from physical supremacy but also from decision power, age, and resources. Experiments 3 and 4 showed that preschoolers have expectations r...
Article
Full-text available
While cognitive scientists increase their tentative incursions in the social domains traditionally reserved for social scientists, most sociologists and anthropologists keep decrying those attempts as reductionist or, at least, irrelevant. In this paper, we argue that collaboration between social and cognitive sciences is necessary to understand th...
Article
Observational studies suggest that children as young as 2 years can evaluate some of the arguments people offer them. However, experimental studies of sensitivity to different arguments have not yet targeted children younger than 5 years. The current study aimed at bridging this gap by testing the ability of preschoolers (3-, 4-, and 5-year-olds) t...
Article
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Modern thinking about human nature is notoriously divided between two contradictory notions: The Hobbesian tradition portrays men as driven by selfish desires, while the Rousseauian tradition recognizes altruistic proclivities as true motivations to cooperate. We tested preschoolers’ predictions about the prosocial or antisocial manner in which peo...
Article
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When a person is accosted by the use of strong racist language, we would normally expect that person to be offended. However, participant observation in a highly intercultural working environment allowed us to identify many situations where the public use of cultural or racist stereotypes triggered laughter (rather than offense), even from the peop...
Article
Full-text available
A partir des propositions contenues dans le dernier livre de John Searle (The Construction of Social Reality), les auteurs synthétisent le projet ambitieux du philosophe qui entend offrir aux sciences sociales un répertoire minimal de concepts communs, comme la théorie des actes de langage, l'intentionnalité, l'intentionnalité collective et le «com...
Article
Full-text available
The environment is so rich with information that our cognitive system would be overloaded without a way to evaluate what is relevant for our needs and goals. Appraisal theory has shown how emotions, by "tagging" the environment with differential values, enable the attribution of our attentional resources to what is most relevant in any given circum...
Article
Full-text available
A great deal of what we know about the world has not been learned via first-hand observation but thanks to others' testimony. A crucial issue is to know which kind of cues people use to evaluate information provided by others. In this context, recent studies in adults and children underline that informants' facial expressions could play an essentia...
Article
Full-text available
When faced with two informants making conflicting claims, preschool children display two heuristics: (1) they preferentially seek and endorse information from the informant with whom they have a stronger social connection, and (2) they preferentially seek and endorse information from the informant who has been more accurate in the past. When these...
Article
Connectives, such as because, are routinely used by parents when addressing their children, yet we do not know to what extent children are sensitive to their use. Given children's early developing abilities to evaluate testimony and produce arguments containing connectives, it was hypothesized that young children would show an appropriate reaction...
Article
Full-text available
The punishment of social misconduct is a powerful mechanism for stabilizing high levels of cooperation among unrelated individuals. It is regularly assumed that humans have a universal disposition to punish social norm violators, which is sometimes labelled "universal structure of human morality" or "pure aversion to social betrayal". Here we prese...
Data
Full-text available
Test procedure and material and supplementary statistics. (PDF)
Article
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The objective of this paper is to discuss whether children have a capacity for deontic reasoning that is irreducible to mentalizing. The results of two experiments point to the existence of such non-mentalistic understanding and prediction of the behaviour of others. In Study 1, young children (3- and 4-year-olds) were told different versions of cl...
Article
Full-text available
Philosophers agree that an important part of our knowledge is acquired via testimony. One of the main objectives of social epistemology is therefore to specify the conditions under which a hearer is justified in accepting a proposition stated by a source. Non-reductionists, who think that testimony could be considered as an a priori source of knowl...
Article
Full-text available
On the Nature of Collective Beliefs Collective beliefs were an important topic for sociology since its official institution by Durkheim. However, sociologists have not yet reached a consensus on the right way to study them. For some, they are a matter of disposition acquired during socialization. For other, they are based on good reasons that the a...
Article
Full-text available
For a long time, social and cognitive scientists fo llowed their own course, not really wondering what their academic neighbors were working on. The origin of this mutual indifference has been well la id out by Dilthey's distinc- tion between the Naturwissenschaften (natural sciences) built upon the discoveries of explanatory physical mechanisms, a...
Chapter
Full-text available
In most methodological and epistemological reflections in the social sciences, the opposition between naturalism and constructivism confirms the word-to-word opposition between individualism and holism. The article questions this epistemological a priori through a study of social agents, as proposed by natural sciences. This mental « deviation » sh...
Article
The extent to which young children monitor and use the truth of assertions to gauge the reliability of subsequent testimony was examined. Three- and 4-year-old children were presented with two informants, an accurate labeler and an inaccurate labeler. They were then invited to learn names for novel objects from these informants. The children correc...
Article
Psychologists have emphasized children's acquisition of information through first-hand observation. However, many beliefs are acquired from others’ testimony. In two experiments, most 4-year-olds displayed sceptical trust in testimony. Having heard informants’ accurate or inaccurate testimony, they anticipated that informants would continue to disp...
Article
Full-text available
The bewitched mind. Witchcraft’s cognitive rootsWitchcraft can be defined as the belief whereby unexplained misfortune is set down to the evil intentions of persons endowed with supernatural powers. Although such beliefs exist in the four corners of the planet, few studies have tried to explain this very wide diffusion, which apparently depends on...
Article
From a cognitive point of view, the adhesion to religious beliefs, especially those involving adult subjects, are quite mysterious. Religious representations entail paradoxical claims that should imply skepticism or cautious doubts in any rational mind. Nevertheless, it is not rare that they prompt an act of total commitment from the converts. The...
Article
Full-text available
A partir des propositions contenues dans le dernier livre de John Searle (The Construction of Social Reality), les auteurs synthetisent le projet ambitieux du philosophe qui entend offrir aux sciences sociales un repertoire minimal de concepts communs, comme la theorie des actes de langage, l'intentionnalite, l'intentionnalite collective et le « co...