The surprisingly serious science of laughing babies
Dr. Caspar Addyman, Birkbeck Babylab
The laughter of little babies is infectious, enchanting and may play an important role in their early development. Dr. Caspar Addyman is a psychologist who studies what it is like to be a baby. After testing hundreds of babies in his experiments he was able to conclude that it is clearly great fun being a baby. But this is something that science largely overlooks. Therefore, he launched the Baby Laughter Project to investigate the role of laughter in early life. Over a 1000 parents from more than 25 countries have completed a detailed online survey and many have sent us stories or videos of things that make their babies laugh.
In this talk Dr Addyman will present the results of his research and describe how it answers questions about of the purpose of laughter. How does laughter track mental development? Is there an evolutionary explanation for why we laugh? Is infant laughter a form of communication? What are the best ways to make a baby laugh? Was tickling babies the first ever form of comedy?
Dr. Caspar Addyman works at the Babylab at Birkbeck, University of London. He specialises in the study of learning in the first few years of life and has researched such topics as how we learn our first words and how our sense of time develops. Caspar has undergraduate degrees in mathematics and psychology and a PhD in developmental psychology from Birkbeck. Before moving into academia he spent 8 years working on financial trading floors, first as a trader and later as a software developer. He has a written a novel about a retired psychologist & a failed comedian. He has turquoise hair and lots of tattoos, many of which were stimuli in his experiments. He lives in Brixton and doesn’t do as much tai chi as he should. Further details on Dr Addyman’s research areas athttp://www.cbcd.bbk.ac.uk/people/scientificstaff/caspar
The talk will be in the basement of the Star of Kings.
There is a suggested donation of £10 on the day.
Concessions £ 8
Donations will go to the following charities
Kids Company http://www.kidsco.org.uk/
We provide practical, emotional and educational support to vulnerable inner-city children. We provide a safe, caring, family environment where support is tailored to the needs of each individual. Our services and support empower children who have experienced enormous challenges to lead positive and fulfilling lives.
Kidscape is committed to keeping children safe from abuse. Kidscape is the first charity in the UK established specifically to prevent bullying and child sexual abuse. Kidscape believes that protecting children from harm is key.
The Star of Kings
126 York Way
Kings Cross, N1 0AX