The Scientist as Parent

A few weeks ago, the New York Times carried an alarmist and basically silly article about cognitive scientists studying their own children.

Alarmist because it suggested this is an ethically grey area. For the types of experiments they were talking about, there are no ethical issues. Their opening story was about Pawan Sinha spending a few hours videotaping his newborn baby’s environment.
Silly, because observant parents have always been interested in what their children are thinking about how their babies develop from infants to walking, talking human beings. Muscian parents, I imagine, spend extra time singing to their babies. Artist parents no doubt are interested in their newborn’s sense of creativity. The parental fascination of scientist parents often gets channeled into…well, science.
Renaisauce has just written a much more insightful and ultimately sweet essay about parental love from the perspective of a neuroscientist who is also a new parent. If you haven’t read it yet, I suggest you do so now.
(Picture of Darius Sinha borrowed from the New York Times)

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