Effortless retaliation: the neural dynamics of interpersonal intentions in the Chicken Game using brain–computer interface

Yiwen Wang, Yuxiao Lin, Chao Fu, Zhihua Huang, Shaobei Xiao, Rongjun Yu

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

The desire for retaliation is a common response across a majority of human societies. However, the neural mechanisms underlying aggression and retaliation remain unclear. Previous studies on social intentions are confounded by a low-level response-related brain activity. Using an Electroencephalogram (EEG)-based brain-computer interface combined with the Chicken Game, our study examined the neural dynamics of aggression and retaliation after controlling for nonessential response-related neural signals. Our results show that aggression is associated with reduced alpha event-related desynchronization (alpha-ERD), indicating reduced mental effort. Moreover, retaliation and tit-for-tat strategy use are also linked with smaller alpha-ERD. Our study provides a novel method to minimize motor confounds and demonstrates that choosing aggression and retaliation is less effortful in social conflicts.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1138-1149
Number of pages12
JournalSocial Cognitive and Affective Neuroscience
Volume16
Issue number11
Early online date12 May 2021
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Nov 2021

Scopus Subject Areas

  • Experimental and Cognitive Psychology
  • Cognitive Neuroscience

User-Defined Keywords

  • Chicken Game
  • alpha event-related desynchronization
  • brain-computer interface
  • cooperation

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