Neurobiology of Aggression and Criminal Violence

Wednesday, 14. October 2009 | 15:15 Uhr


Gerhard Roth


University Bremen


Professor Gerhard Roth, University of Bremen, referred in his presentation to the relationship between the brain region which is responsible for face recognition and empathy, and increased outbursts of violence. Human beings with a poorly developed amygdala have problems in discerning anxious from aggressive facial expressions. As a fatal consequence of this, such people react with impulsive-reactive violence to anxious people.

Gerhard Roth

Gerhard Roth (*1942 in Marburg) studied Music Sciences, German Studies and Philosophy in Muenster and Rome from 1963 until 1969 after graduating from the humanistic Friedrichs-Gymnasium in Kassel. In 1969 he received a doctorate in Philosophy with his work on the Marxist Antonio Gramsci. Afterwards he studied Biology at Berkeley (California), amongst others. In 1974, he finished his second career at the University of Muenster with a doctorate in Zoology.

Since 1976, he is professor of Behavioural Physiology at the University of Bremen; in 1989, he became director of the Institute for Brain Research.

1997 he was appointed founding rector of the Hanse Science College. He is member of the Berlin-Brandenburg Academy of Sciences and Humanities and has been president of the Study Foundation of the German People since 2003.

His main areas of research are cognitive and emotional neurobiology of vertebrates, theoretic neurobiology and neurophilosophy.

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