Brain and Behavior

Motor Behavior and Intentional Action

Does the brain process complex behavior differently than simple behavior?

The frontal lobe is not the only source of complex goal-oriented movement. As discussed above, the frontal lobe is a recent evolutionary achievement and is most fully developed in humans. Prior to the evolution of the frontal lobe, however, animals needed some way to perform goal-oriented behaviors. Prey had to be hunted, hygiene maintained, food eaten, and social behaviors performed. In most animals, these behaviors were patterned into fairly fixed packets of behaviors that would be released rather automatically in the face of the appropriate stimulus. The mouse runs across the floor and the cat pounces. The part of the brain associated with these pre-set behavioral packets is known as the basal ganglia.


This is a web preview of the "The Handy Psychology Answer Book" app. Many features only work on your mobile device. If you like what you see, we hope you will consider buying. Get the App