Rachel Sarah Herz
|Notable works||The Scent of Desire and That's Disgusting|
Rachel Sarah Herz is both a psychologist and a cognitive neuroscientist, and a recognized expert on the psychology of smell.
Rachel Herz completed her undergraduate degree in psychology and biology at Queen’s University in Kingston, Ontario, and an MA and Ph.D in the Psychology Department at the University of Toronto. After completing her PhD in 1992, she won a Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council (NSERC) Post-Doctoral Award and took her research to the University of British Columbia. In 1994, she received the Ajinomoto USA Inaugural Award for Promising Young Scientists and joined the Monell Chemical Senses Center in Philadelphia as an assistant member. In 2000, Herz joined the faculty at Brown University, first as a member of the Psychology Department and now as a visiting professor in the Department of Psychiatry and Human Behavior of Brown University Medical School. She is also part-time faculty in the Department of Psychology at Boston College. Since the mid-1990s, Herz has been consulting for many of the world’s leading multinational fragrance and flavor companies and regularly lectures to national and international audiences.
In 2004 Herz had to change her relationship with Brown University to a more limited involvement so that she could pursue other creative enterprises. It was at this time that she began writing The Scent of Desire: Discovering Our Enigmatic Sense of Smell (William Morrow/Harper Collins Publishers) as well as working on other means to educate and stimulate the general public about the chemical senses. Her commercial ventures include The Educated Palate.
Psychology of smell
Herz has been conducting research on smell, emotion and cognition since 1990. Her research has shown how odor-evoked memory is emotionally unique compared to other kinds of memory experiences, how emotional associations can change odor perception, and how odors can be conditioned to emotions and subsequently influence motivated behavior. Her work also deals with how language can affect odor perception and her laboratory has empirically demonstrated the first instance of olfactory illusions created by words alone. A third area of her research concerns the role of body-odor and fragrance in heterosexual attraction. Recently, Herz has begun studying how we perceive food and how food-based emotions influence us. Theoretically guided by perspectives from cognitive psychology and evolutionary biology, Herz uses psychophysical, self-report, cognitive-behavioral and neurological techniques, including functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI), to investigate these topics.
- Herz, R.S. (1998). "Are odors the best cues to memory? A cross-modal comparison of associative memory stimuli." Annals of the New York Academy Sciences, 855, 670-674.
- Herz, R.S. (2000). "Scents of Time." The Sciences (July/August), 34-39.
- Herz, R.S., & von Clef, J. (2001). "The influence of verbal labeling on the perception of odors: Evidence for olfactory illusions?" Perception, 30, 381-391.
- Herz, R.S. (2001). "Ah, sweet skunk: Why we like or dislike what we smell." Cerebrum, Vol.3(4), 31-47.
- Herz, R.S., & Inzlicht, M. (2002). "Gender differences in response to physical and social signals involved in human mate selection: The importance of smell for women." Evolution and Human Behavior, 23, 359-364.
- Herz, R.S., Eliassen, J.C., Beland, S.L., & T. Souza. (2003). "Neuroimaging evidence for the emotional potency of odor-evoked memory." Neuropsychologia, 42, 371-378.
- Carskadon, M., & Herz, R.S. (2004). "Minimal olfactory perception during sleep: Why odor alarms will not work for humans." Sleep, 27, 402-405.
- Herz, R.S., Beland, S.L. & Hellerstein, M. (2004). "Changing odor hedonic perception through emotional associations in humans." International Journal of Comparative Psychology, 17, 315-339.
- Herz, R.S., Schankler, C. & Beland, S. (2004). "Olfaction, emotion and associative learning: Effects on motivated behavior." Motivation and Emotion, 28, 363-383.
- Herz, R.S. (2006). "I know what I like: Understanding odor preferences." In J. Drobnick (Ed), The Smell Culture Reader. (pp. 190– 203). Oxford: Berg.
- Herz, R.S. (2009). "Aromatherapy facts and fictions: A scientific analysis of olfactory effects on mood, physiology and behavior." International Journal of Neuroscience, 119, 263-290.
- Herz, R. S. (2011). PROP taste sensitivity is related to visceral but not moral disgust. Chemosensory Perception, 4, 72-79. doi:10.1007/s12078-011-9089-1
- Herz, R.S. & Hinds, A. (2013). Stealing is not gross: Language distinguishes visceral disgust from moral violations. American Journal of Psychology, 126, 275-286. doi: 10.5406/amerjpsyc.126.3.0275
- Herz, R.S. (2014). Verbal priming and taste sensitivity make moral transgressions gross. Behavioral Neuroscience, 128, 20-28. doi:10.1037/a0035468
- Sugiyama, H., Oshida, A., Thueneman, P., Littell, S., Katayama, A., Kashiwagi, M., Hikichi, S. & Herz, R.S. (2015). Proustian products are preferred: The relationship between odor-evoked memories and product evaluation. Chemosensory Perception, 8, 1-10. doi: 10.1007/s12078-015-9182-y
- Herz, R.S. (2016). Birth of a Neurogastronomy Nation: The inaugural symposium of the international society of neurogastronomy. Chemical Senses, 41, 101-103. doi:10.1093/chemse/bjv073
- Herz, R. S. (2016). The role of odor-evoked memory in psychological and physiological health. Brain Sciences, 6(3),22. doi:10.3390/brainsci6030022.
- Ershadi, M., Russell, J.A. & Herz, R.S. (2017). The (non)-effect of induced emotion on desire for different types of foods. Food Quality and Preference, 62, 214-17. doi.org/10.1016/j.foodqual.2017.06.009
- Herz, R.S., Van Reen, E., Barker, D., Hilditch, C., Bartz, A. & Carskadon, M.A. (2017). The influence of circadian timing on odor detection. Chemical Senses. doi:10.1093/chemse/bjx067
- The Scent of Desire: Discovering Our Enigmatic Sense of Smell, New York: William Morrow/HarperCollins Publishers. ISBN 978-0-06-082537-9.
- That's Disgusting: Unraveling the Mysteries of Repulsion, New York: W. W. Norton & Company. ISBN 978-0-393-07647-9
- Why You Eat What You Eat: The Science Behind our Relationship with Food, New York: W. W. Norton & Company. ISBN 978-0-393-24331-4
Herz's research on sensory memory was on display from 2001-2006 in a traveling Smithsonian Institution exhibit called "Brain: The world inside your head". She has given numerous interviews, including for: CBC, The Science of the Senses, @Discovery.ca (The Discovery Channel, Canada), The Discovery Channel USA, ABC Discovery News, ABC News, The BBC, National Geographic, NBC Nightly news, Korean Public Broadcasting, ABC The Chronicle, FOX News, National Public Radio, CBS The Early Show.
- "IATA conference". aromamedical.com. Archived from the original on 2012-07-21.
- "insert.pmd" (PDF). bcft.ca. Archived from the original (PDF) on 2007-09-29.
- Herz, R.S. "Are Odors the Best Cues to Memory? A Cross-Modal Comparison of Associative Memory Stimuli", Annals of the New York Academy of Sciences, 855 (1): 670
- Herz, R.S. (1998). "Are odors the best cues to memory? A cross-modal comparison of associative memory stimuli", Annals of the New York Academy of Sciences, 855, 670-674.
- Herz, R.S., Eliassen, J.C., Beland, S.L., & T. Souza. (2003). "Neuroimaging evidence for the emotional potency of odor-evoked memory". Neuropsychologia, 42, 371-378.
- "04-069 (Science of Scent)". www.brown.edu.
- Herz, R.S., Beland, S.L. & Hellerstein, M. (2004). "Changing odor hedonic perception through emotional associations in humans". International Journal of Comparative Psychology, 17, 315-339.
- BBC News, "Scents 'influence women's behaviour'"
- Herz, R.S., Schankler, C. & Beland, S. (2004). "Olfaction, emotion and associative learning: Effects on motivated behavior", Motivation and Emotion, 28, 363-383.
- Herz, R.S. (2005). "The unique interaction between language and olfactory perception and cognition", Trends in Experimental Psychology Research, (pp. 91-109). New York: Nova Science Publishers, Inc.
- Herz, R.S. (2003). "The effect of verbal context in olfactory perception", Journal of Experimental Psychology: General, 132, 595-606.
- "Salon.com Sex - The sweet stench of desire". salon.com. Archived from the original on 2011-07-22.
- Herz, R.S. & Cahill, E. D. (1997). "Differential use of sensory information in sexual behavior as a function of gender", Human Nature, 8, 275-286.
- Herz, R.S., & Inzlicht, M. (2002). "Gender differences in response to physical and social signals involved in human mate selection: The importance of smell for women", Evolution and Human Behavior, 23, 359-364.
- "Sense of Smell: I Know What I Like: Understanding Odor Preferences" Archived 2007-06-12 at the Wayback Machine.
- "Our Purpose - Pfizer: One of the world's premier biopharmaceutical companies". www.pfizer.com.