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EASP – European Association of Social Psychology

Heartwarming: How Our Inner Thermostat Made Us Human

26.11.2020, by Tina Keil in publication

by Hans Rocha IJzerman; W. W. Norton & Company, 304 pages, ISBN: 978-1-324-00252-9

Member Publication: Heartwarming
Member Publication: Heartwarming

As the year is coming to an end, you may be deciding on new books you’d like to read. I am pleased to announce the February 2021 release of my book "Heartwarming: How Our Inner Thermostat Made Us Human."

The book discusses research on social thermoregulation across disciplines, including (social, developmental, and clinical) psychology, behavioral ecology, and linguistics. I discuss, for example, a sample of 84 languages around the world and point to which languages mix warmth and affection and how much energy 25 different animals save from huddling. There’s also a bit of history on the cognitive revolution and the start of embodiment research. It was tough balancing existing research on social thermoregulation and the insights from the credibility revolution, but I hope to have succeeded at least a little bit.

You can read more about the book here: and read its first review:

Finally, you can check the recommendation by some experts:

Thermal regulation is one of the most obvious aspects of life governance. Why would we have invented central heating and air conditioning if it were not? Still, it always takes a back seat to eating and drinking. Hans Rocha IJzerman’s informative book will change your mind.
~ Antonio Damasio, author of The Strange Order of Things
Hans Rocha IJzerman sticks a thermometer into every human and animal behavior to show us how much depends on outside and inside temperature. It is a surprising take that illuminates far more than you might think.
~ Frans de Waal, New York Times best-selling author of Mama’s Last Hug

Note that this is not a textbook, but would work well as supplemental reading in a college-level introduction to psychology or close relationships course.