Behavioral and Brain Sciences

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Behavioral and Brain Sciences (2009), 32:215-216 Cambridge University Press
Copyright © Cambridge University Press 2009
doi:10.1017/S0140525X09001046

Open Peer Commentary

The Proust effect and the evolution of a dual learning system


Helena Matutea1 and Miguel A. Vadilloa1

Article author query
matute h [PubMed]  [Google Scholar]
vadillo ma [PubMed]  [Google Scholar]

Abstract

Proust's madeleine illustrates the automatic nature of associative learning. Although we agree with Mitchell et al. that no compelling scientific proof for this effect has yet been reported in humans, evolutionary constraints suggest that it should not be discarded: There is no reason by which natural selection should favor individuals who lose a fast and automatic survival tool.

The propositional nature of human associative learning Chris J. Mitchell, Jan De Houwer and Peter F. Lovibond School of Psychology, University of New South Wales, Kensington 2052, Australia chris.mitchell@unsw.edu.au http://www.psy.unsw.edu.au/profiles/cmitchell.html; Department of Psychology, Ghent University, Henri Dunantlaan 2, B-9000 Ghent, Belgium jan.dehouwer@ugent.be http://users.ugent.be/~jdhouwer/">; School of Psychology, University of New South Wales, Kensington 2052, Australia p.lovibond@unsw.edu.au http://www.psy.unsw.edu.au/profiles/plovibond.html">


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