Our pick of the best psychology and neuroscience links from the past week or so:
To Fall in Love With Anyone, Do This
Mandy Catron fell in love after following the format of a psychology study from 20 years ago. “I’ve skied steep slopes and hung from a rock face by a short length of rope, but staring into someone’s eyes for four silent minutes was one of the more thrilling and terrifying experiences of my life.”
Trying to Cure Depression, but Inspiring Torture
The sorry tale of how Martin Seligman’s work on depression and “learned helpless” was misapplied by the cowboy psychologists who advised the CIA on interrogation techniques.
Should Schools Teach Personality?
Or does teaching “grit” and other beneficial characteristics take attention away from problem schools?
The Secret History of Thoughts
NPR has launched a wonderful new programme called Invisibilia, with the first episode looking at intrusive thoughts and whether they reveal our innermost wishes.
Napping “Key” to Babies’ Memory and Learning
NHS Choices takes its characteristically calm look at new research that’s been in the headlines.
My Lovely Wife in the Psych Ward
Moving first-hand account of living through serious mental illness. “Even during our best moments as husband and wife, father and mother, we can feel lingering traces of our roles as caretaker and patient,” writes Mark Lukach at Pacific Standard.
A Picture is Worth a Thousand Words—or Is It?
Stephan Lewandowsky at the Psychonomic Society reports on new research that suggests, when it comes to free recall of textual information, accompanying diagrams are no more helpful than a simple repetition of the text.
Mindfulness: Panacea or Fad?
BBC Radio 4 investigates (listen again on iPlayer).
Can Curry Cure Alzheimer’s? Four Healthy Ageing Diet Myths Busted
Which foods really benefit us as we grow older? The Guardian hears from doctors and nutritionists. _________________________________