Eamonn Walsh

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Humans express laughter differently depending on the context: polite titters of agreement are very different from explosions of mirth. Using functional MRI, we explored the neural responses during passive listening to authentic amusement laughter and controlled, voluntary laughter. We found greater activity in anterior medial prefrontal cortex (amPFC) to(More)
An important aspect of volition is the internal decision whether to act or to withhold an action. We used EEG frequency analysis of sensorimotor rhythms to investigate brain activity when people prepare and then cancel a voluntary action. Participants used a rotating clock-hand to report when they experienced the intention to press a key with their right(More)
The feeling of voluntary control and awareness of movement is fundamental to our notions of selfhood and responsibility for actions, yet can be lost in neuropsychiatric syndromes (e.g. delusions of control, non-epileptic seizures) and culturally influenced dissociative states (e.g. attributions of spirit possession). The brain processes involved remain(More)
Previous research has indicated a potential discontinuity between monkey and human ventral premotor-parietal mirror systems, namely that monkey mirror systems process only transitive (object-directed) actions, whereas human mirror systems may also process intransitive (non-object-directed) actions. The present study investigated this discontinuity by(More)
An important aspect of everyday behaviour is the ability to cancel a prepared movement. In Experiment 1, subjects prepared a response, and then either executed it in response to a subsequent Go signal, or cancelled the movement if a NoGo signal occurred. Subjects had to detect weak shocks, which were delivered after the signals on some trials. Results were(More)
Suggestions of limb paralysis in highly hypnotically suggestible subjects have been employed to successfully model conversion disorders, revealing similar patterns of brain activation associated with attempted movement of the affected limb. However, previous studies differ with regard to the executive regions involved during involuntary inhibition of the(More)
Our sense of self includes awareness of our thoughts and movements, and our control over them. This feeling can be altered or lost in neuropsychiatric disorders as well as in phenomena such as "automatic writing" whereby writing is attributed to an external source. Here, we employed suggestion in highly hypnotically suggestible participants to model various(More)
Involuntary movements occur in a variety of neuropsychiatric disorders and culturally influenced dissociative states (e.g., delusions of alien control and attributions of spirit possession). However, the underlying brain processes are poorly understood. We combined suggestion and fMRI in 15 highly hypnotically susceptible volunteers to investigate changes(More)
The experience of agency refers to the feeling that we control our own actions, and through them the outside world. In many contexts, sense of agency has strong implications for moral responsibility. For example, a sense of agency may allow people to choose between right and wrong actions, either immediately, or on subsequent occasions through learning(More)
When a weak shock is delivered to the finger immediately before a voluntary movement, or during a delay interval where subjects are prepared to make the movement, shock detection rates worsen progressively as the movement approaches. Further, we previously showed that shock detection improves again if a NoGo signal produces inhibition of a prepared(More)