School of Arts & Sciences

This Week in Willpower

June 13, 2010

Robert Kurzban of the School of Arts and Sciences says new analysis calls into question the hypothesis that will power has a biological fuel.

Article Source: Psychology Today
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Media Contact:Jordan Reese | jreese@upenn.edu | 215-573-6604 June 16, 2010

Sex, Drugs and Moral Goals: A Penn Psychology Study of Reproductive Strategies and Recreational Drug Use

PHILADELPHIA –- Why is there so much disagreement about whether using recreational drugs is morally wrong? A University of Pennsylvania psychology study shows that the debate about drugs might really be about sex.

The study compared two competing theories.

One theory -- the conventional wisdom in political science -- sees drug attitudes as primarily coming from people's political ideology, level of religious commitment, and personality, for example, openness to experience. 

Self-Control/Sugar Model Challenged

June 14, 2010

Robert Kurzban of the School of Arts and Sciences discusses the relationship between certain brain activities and glucose.

Article Source: United Press International

Insects That Can’t Beat Them Scare Them

June 14, 2010

Daniel Janzen of the School of Arts and Sciences leads a research study on “false-eyed” insects.

Article Source: New York Times

The Myth of Post-Racial America

June 10, 2010

Thomas Sugrue of the School of Arts and Sciences is featured for his new book, “Not Even Past: Barack Obama and the Burden of Race.”

Article Source: Washington Post
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Media Contact:Jordan Reese | jreese@upenn.edu | 215-573-6604June 10, 2010

University of Pennsylvania Analysis: Contrary to Popular Models, Sugar Is Not Burned by Self-Control Tasks

PHILADELPHIA –- Contradicting a popular model of self-control, a University of Pennsylvania psychologist says the data from a 2007 study argues against the idea that glucose is the resource used to manage self control and that humans rely on this energy source for will power.

The analysis, conducted by Robert Kurzban and published in the current issue of the journal Evolutionary Psychology, shows that evidence previously presented in favor of the claim that the brain consumes extra glucose when people exert self-control shows no such thing.

Cleopatra Exhibit Tells an Intriguing Tale

June 5, 2010

David Silverman of the School of Arts and Sciences and Penn Museum comments on the legend of Cleopatra.

Article Source: Washington Post

Medical Ethics Lapses Cited in Interrogations

June 6, 2010

Jonathan Moreno of the School of Medicine and the School of Arts and Sciences discusses the medical ethics of waterboarding.

Article Source: New York Times

Beer Made 9,000 Years Back in China Recreated

June 4, 2010

Patrick McGovern of Penn Museum and the School of Arts and Sciences is featured for his re-creation of ancient brews.

Article Source: Sify News (India)

Genes Set Jews Apart, Study Finds

June 3, 2010

Sarah Tishkoff of the School of Medicine and the School of Arts and Sciences comments on the largest study ever conducted of what it means genetically to be Jewish.

Article Source: Los Angeles Times