SPSP 2012: Oxytocin, Threat, and the “Mama Bear Effect”

Long called the “Love Hormone,” the hormone oxytocin has been implicated for more than a decade in such prosocial activities as empathy, trust, and generosity (with both human and animal models). At the social neuroendocrinology pre-conference at this year’s SPSP conference, some influential researchers in the field of social psychology laid out why oxytocin might also have another side that is less fuzzy, and more defensive.