Wednesday, November 10, 2010

New Research Shows Meat Pacifies


According to research presented at a recent McGill University symposium, seeing meat makes people significantly less aggressive. Frank Kachanov, a researcher with the university's Department of Psychology, was surprised by the findings but postulates that the the calming effect of seeing meat could be related to our primitive ancestor's group feasting. “We used imagery of meat that was ready to eat. In terms of behaviour, with the benefit of hindsight, it would make sense that our ancestors would be calm, as they would be surrounded by friends and family at meal time.”

According to the Globe and Mail,
Kachanoff recruited 82 men and asked them to punish an aide with various volumes of sound each time he made an error while sorting photos, some with pictures of meat, and others with neutral images. The researcher had anticipated participants who watched the aide sort meat photos would inflict more discomfort on him, but he was surprised when those pictures did not provoke aggressive behaviour.
If you've ever had the opportunity to read the online comments (here, for example) in any discussion of meat eating vs veganism/vegetarianism, it will come as no surprise that those who don't often look at meat are a more aggressive bunch. Kidding!

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