the Eyewhites project -
Human amygdala responsivity to eyewhites.
|Scary eyes & neutral eyes
from the Eyewhites project. The left picture mimics the amount of white in the eyes of a "fearful" face.
I look at the eyes on the left and definitely feel a little strange. I have trouble looking away from them to the neutral eyes on the right. Since the amygdala is part of the limbic system and implicated in disorders like depression, though, I may be a little hypersensitive. Even more oddly, I can feel the locus of the strangeness where the amygdala is, based on what I discovered when I looked it up. There is an article in Science as well, but I'm not sure how public the link is. The precis on the Whalen lab site is open, though, and you can get a .pdf file of the paper there.
Fascinating, in the pre-Spock sense of the word. It feels odd, but almost grounding to be aware of a process in the amygdala - like activating a reflex, it doesn't involve any thinking, per se.