At Royal Holloway, University of London - it’s so pretty here, it’s a really small uni and has such a nice old feel to it. I’m off to the classics department welcome talk and example lecture, then off to my interview! I hope it goes well!
Hey Archy, what do you think of Founder's building at Royal Holloway University of London, aka the most flammable building in Britain? (I study there and someone tried AND FAILED to set fire to it last term it was... an interesting few days)
Preparing for parenthood: Study finds pregnant women show increased activity in right side of brain
Pregnant women show increased activity in the area of the brain related to emotional skills as they prepare to bond with their babies, according to a new study by scientists at Royal Holloway, University of London.
The research, which will be presented at the British Psychological Society’s annual conference today (Wednesday 7 May), found that pregnant women use the right side of their brain more than new mothers do when they look at faces with emotive expressions.
“Our findings give us a significant insight into the ‘baby brain’ phenomenon that makes a woman more sensitive during the child bearing process”, said Dr Victoria Bourne, from the Department of Psychology at Royal Holloway. “The results suggest that during pregnancy, there are changes in how the brain processes facial emotions that ensure that mothers are neurologically prepared to bond with their babies at birth.”
Researcher examined the neuropsychological activity of 39 pregnant women and new mothers as they looked at images of adult and baby faces with either positive or negative expressions. The results showed that pregnant women used the right side of their brain more than new mothers, particularly when processing positive emotions.
The study used the chimeric faces test, which uses images made of one half of a neutral face combined with one half of an emotive face to see which side of the participants’ brain is used to process positive and negative emotions.
Dr Bourne said: “We know from previous research that pregnant women and new mothers are more sensitive to emotional expressions, particularly when looking at babies’ faces. We also know that new mothers who demonstrate symptoms of post-natal depression sometimes interpret their baby’s emotional expressions as more negative than they really are.
“Discovering the neuropsychological processes that may underpin these changes is a key step towards understanding how they might influence a mother’s bonding with her baby.”
The building is a splendid & unique one, in the style of the French Châteaux, built & given by Mr Holloway. After he was presented to me, we drove round the whole College, which stands on a hill, above Egham, with a beautiful view. The architecture is said to be copied from the Château de Chambord. We then got out & were conducted to the Chapel by Mr Holloway (a very modest man). It was very full, & I saw many acquaintances. The style is rather too gaudy, though fine in proportion. Here, the Arch Bishop delivered up a prayer & an Ode was sung, composed by Sir G. Elvey, the words, by Mr Martin Holloway. From here we were taken to the Picture Gallery, where there are fine specimens of modern art, & many well-known pictures, such as “The 2 Princes in the Tower” by Millais, Landseer’s “Palace Bears”, Frith’s “Derby Day”, Long’s “Marriage Market”, &c. I was given a beautiful key, & a fine album of photographic views, by the architect Mr Crossfield. Walked through one of the long Corridors, & saw all the admirable arrangements. It is a Ladies College, & each student has a bedroom & sitting room, charmingly furnished, besides a large sitting for every 4 or 5 together. After waiting a moment, in a very pretty little room, we went out on to the Dais, erected in the upper Quadrangle, which was filled with people. Here 3 verses of God save the Queen were sung, an address was presented, not read, & I handed my answer to Mr Holloway, saying how much gratified I was to open this magnificent building, & expressing my best wishes for its success. Then Ld Kimberley (acting for the Home Secy) announced that the College was open, after which there was a flourish of trumpets, & much cheering.
Queen Victoria writing in her journal about her opening and visit to my university, Royal Holloway, on 30th June 1886