We know human screams are jarring. They’re loud, occasionally shrill, and tend to make us feel stressed, or even fearful. What’s unclear is why they elicit anxiety. But a new study suggests this response may have something to do with the acoustic quality of human screams, and how they trigger the brain’s fear response.
You've heard the self-help gurus who say positive thoughts can bring us happiness, wealth, and success. But there's another side to the story. Here's why positive thinking often backfires — and why many of us are starting to resent it.
B.F. Skinner gave us concepts like "conditioned behavior," "positive reinforcement," and even "time-outs" for children. But he was also a radical among psychologists who cast aside notions of dignity and free will. Here's why Skinner continues to be relevant — and even a bit dangerous.
Most of us are pretty good at picking up on sarcasm. Quite frankly, we have to be. Much of the way we communicate as a modern society is structured around subtle contextual cues that tell us whether someone's mockingly contemptuous or earnest. Many of us can even pick up on sarcasm when it's conveyed entirely via text.
Social scientists have long known that people manage their reputations by modifying their behavior in public. But new research out of Australia now shows that this tendency to "act appropriately" extends beyond our actions and into our moral judgments.