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I noticed something weird about Disney Princesses lately. Naturally, I had to examine it through the lens of science. The answer led me to new knowledge about human development, the domestication and taming of animals, and why we find things cute in the first place. You’ll never look at cartoons the same way again
Siberian silver fox footage courtesy of Lee Alan Dugatkin and Lyudmila Trut. Check out their book “How to Tame a Fox (and Build a Dog)” to learn more, it’s great! https://press.uchicago.edu/ucp/books/book/chicago/H/bo25568406.html
Skull reproductions courtesy of Boneclones: https://boneclones.com/
Gould, Stephen Jay “Biological Homage to Mickey Mouse” https://faculty.uca.edu/benw/biol4415/papers/Mickey.pdf
Bogin, B. (1990). The evolution of human childhood. Bioscience, 40(1), 16-25.
Somel, M., Franz, H., Yan, Z., Lorenc, A., Guo, S., Giger, T., … & Webster, M. J. (2009). Transcriptional neoteny in the human brain. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 106(14), 5743-5748.
Twitter: @DrJoeHanson @okaytobesmart
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