"Most kids demonstrate a clear-cut preference for their own ethnic group by the time they turn 3. But children with a rare genetic disorder called Williams syndrome don’t have any racial biases. And while they do possess the gender stereotypes that other kids have, they don’t experience normal social anxiety, according to study researcher Andreas Meyer-Lindenberg of Germany’s University of Heidelberg.
A gene deletion that affects the brain and other organs is what causes Williams syndrome, and kids with the disorder are 'hypersocial,' says Meyer-Lindenberg.
'The whole concept [of social anxiety] would be foreign to them,' Meyer-Lindenberg told LiveScience.
In his study, kids without Williams syndrome assigned positive traits like friendliness to photos of people who were the same race as they were. When they were asked something with a negative connotation (like, 'which is the naughty boy?'), they mostly pointed to pictures of people who were a different race."
Friday, April 16, 2010
Williams syndrome makes kids lack social anxiety and racial biases: study: