Алкоголизация как условие регрессии при научении и при просоциальном поведении // Вопросы психологии. 2017. №3. С. 80-91.
Alcoholism as a cause of regression in learning and in pro-social behavior
Despite a long history of the notion of regression, its manifestations and mechanisms are still poorly researched, specific experimental studies are rare, points of view conflict. A study was conducted to discover dynamics of subjective experience and brain activity lying at the foundation of phenomena described as regression and observed in seemingly heterogeneous phenomena, such as stress, illness, violent emotions, alcoholic intoxication. The paper discusses the notion of regression from different angles, including the systemic evolutionary approach, and analyzes its potential brain and neuroenetic mechanisms. It has been experimentally proved that a high degree of alcoholic intoxication causes regression brought about by reverse de-differentiation: a relative increase of representation of lowly differentiated systems in actual experience.In experimental situations of learning in animals lowered activation of neurons of the first (drinking) skill was observed in the process of development of the second (eating) skill. In order to discover effects of alcohol on the general pattern of moral judgements the authors analyzed dynamics of the index of moral acceptance of the death of one for the sake of many. Complexity of behavior is simplified under alcohol and individual differences in pro-social behavior become less expressed. Findings demonstrate similarities in assessments of socially meaningful actions under alcohol, which, the authors believe, points to the effect of alcohol as “de-differentiator” causing regression. The effects may be linked to the general mechanism of reversible de-differentiation which determines repression of a number of systems (and, consequently, of activity of a number of neurons) in the most differentiated “complex” systems. This simplification may be linked to accelerated learning and also to the fact that organization of behavior becomes more uniform.