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Psychology Distinguished Lecturer Series - SJ Segalowitz

Friday, November 15, 2019
2:30 PM – 4:00 PM
Room: 101
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DR. SID SEGALOWITZ, Professor of Psychology, Brock University

TALK: Free Will, Agency, and Strategies for Building Developmental Neural Models

Abstract. Over the course of my career, I have found that the construct of free will repeatedly arises in different guises, as Determinism when teaching history of psychology, and as Agency when teaching child matu­ration and brain development. It is also a central but vaguely defined construct in my research involving cognitive and affective psychophysiology. In this talk, I will attempt to integrate these 3 perspectives for a more unified view of this complex but central aspect of human behaviour and experience. Within neuroscience, discussion is often sidetracked by arguing against outdated notions of Cartesian Dualism, either by referring to free will as an illusion or by referring to complexity as a way of dismissing Deter­minism. I will propose a model that is, I believe, consistent with these varied perspectives and outline how, with the new technologies recently available for studying brain electrophysiology, we can begin to operationalize this construct so as to address a developmental agenda, as well as, possibly, an agenda in psychopathology and everyday psychology.

Bio. Sid Segalowitz is a professor in the Psychology and Neuroscience programs at Brock University. He is the founding and current director of the Centre for Lifespan Development Research at Brock.

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