Wieder so ein kleines Puzzle-Stück, dass mir erklärt, warum ich so bin, wie ich bin: Offensichtlich führt der Konsum von Horrorfilmen dazu, dass man abstrakte Kunst besser aufnimmt:
Scientists had 85 subjects experience one of five different things. One group watched a brief scary movie, another group watched a happy movie, and two other groups performed either 30 or 15 jumping jacks. The control group did nothing. Then all the subjects looked at four abstract paintings, for 30 seconds each, by a Russian artist, El Lissitsky. And they rated the art—based on qualities of how inspiring, stimulating, rousing, boring, forgetful or uninteresting the piece was for them.
The group that watched the scary movie rated the art as more sublime and positive than any other of the groups. In fact the other four groups did not significantly differ in their ratings. We might not think of describing art as frightening. The researchers note, however, that art can “…be surprising, elicit goose bumps, and inspire awe.”
Schöne Fotoserie von Natalia Pereira namens „Dismorfobina“, eine Interpretation der Dysmorphophobie (oder auch BDD für Body Dysmorphic Disorder), bei der Menschen unter einer gestörten Selbstwahrnehmung des Körpers leiden, heutzutage vor allem ausgelöst durch gephotoshoppte Schönheitsideale.
Dismorfobina is a disorder suffered by those who have been dominated by the habits of consumerism. This project reflects the deformation of our identity, when we desperately try to fit into a perfect mold that is not our own. A useless and endless quest to be what we are not.
Neulich hatte ich einen Auszug über’s Furzen aus Robert Provines Buch Curious Behavior gebloggt, heute hat der Guardian einen weiteren Text daraus, diesmal geht’s um die Psychologie von Hahahas und Hihihis und Lach-Epidemien. Klingt wie ein Buch, das ich lesen muss:
Consider the bizarre events of the 1962 outbreak of contagious laughter in Tanganyika (now Tanzania). What began as an isolated fit of laughter in a group of 12-to 18-year-old schoolgirls rapidly rose to epidemic proportions. Contagious laughter propagated from one individual to the next, eventually infecting adjacent communities. Like an influenza outbreak, the laughter epidemic was so severe that it required the closing of at least 14 schools and afflicted about 1,000 people. Fluctuating in intensity, it lasted for around two and a half years. A psychogenic, hysterical origin of the epidemic was established after excluding alternatives such as toxic reaction and encephalitis.
Amazon-Partnerlink: Curious Behavior: Yawning, Laughing, Hiccupping, and Beyond
Swen hat gestern eine ganze Reihe schöner „Science in SciFi“-Podcasts gepostet und ich höre mir jetzt erstmal eine philosophische Abhandlung über das Wesen des Bösen anhand der Daleks an, ein paar Gedanken eines Psychologen über Batman und den jüngsten Amoklauf und Cory Doctorow über Copyright.
The evil of the Daleks
Radio ABC: “They are among the most loved, or most feared, villains in science fiction. But what is it that makes Dalek such great baddies? What constitutes evil and why do the Daleks represent a very specific idea about rationality and morality? This week, we talk to a philosopher about what the Daleks have to tell us—in their mechanical, screechy voices—about who we are.” […]
Dr. Travis Langley – Batman and Psychology: A Dark and Stormy Knight (M4a File)
theofantastique.com: “Dr. Langley is both a social psychologist, and a comic fan who labels himself a “superheroologist.” In this podcast he shares his thoughts on the Colorado shooting and alleged connections to Batman, and additional thoughts on superheroes in American culture.” […]
Cory Doctorow on Copyright
Radio ABC 16.07.2012: “A funny thing happened on the way to the 21st century, copyright policy ceased to exist. Because every copyright policy that we make has a seismic effect on the Internet, and you can’t regulate copying without regulating the Internet.”
Psychologen haben herausgefunden, dass das Gefühl von Awesome gut für’s persönliche Wohlbefinden ist. Was Nerdcore so ein bisschen zum Wellness-Blog macht. OH NOEZ!
How did they stimulate awe? Rudd explained over email:
The methods that were the most effective at stimulating awe were those that presented participants with a “new” awe experience (i.e., having participants watch the awe-eliciting commercial). Remembering a past awe-eliciting experience and reading about an imaginary awe-eliciting experience (i.e., the short story) also elicited awe, but relatively less compared to when participants experienced a “fresh” and “real” awe experience.
How can we stimulate awe and its benefits in our daily life? Rudd explains:
There are two things needed for a true awe experience: 1) Perceptual vastness (i.e., you need to perceive that you’ve encountered something vast in number, size, scope, complexity, or social bearing) and 2) A need for accommodation (i.e., you must feel that you need to revise or update your mental structures/the way you think/your understanding of the world in order to understand the perceptually vast thing/stimuli). So anything you experience in daily life that leads you to experience these two things can stimulate awe and its benefits. And the things that elicit these two things and, as a result, awe, can differ from person to person. However, there are some things that seem to more frequently elicit awe—experiencing nature, being exposed to art or music, and observing the accomplishments of others. Things like social interactions and personal accomplishments seem to be less likely to elicit awe. And I imagine that just putting yourself in new situations, in new places, and encountering new people would increase your chances of experiencing awe.
Public Domain Review hat ein paar der Diagramme aus B.W. Betts Versuch, im 19. Jahrhundert die Evolution des menschlichen Bewusstseins in geometrischen, dreidimensionalen Formen abzubilden. Fascinating stuff!
Diagrams from Geometrical psychology, or, The science of representation: an abstract of the theories and diagrams of B. W. Betts (1887) by Louisa S. Cook, which details New Zealander Benjamin Bett’s remarkable attempts to mathematically model the evolution of human consciousness through geometric forms.
NYT-Article on Stupid Games features a stupid Game, that lets you destroy a NYT-Article on Stupid Games
Sam Anderson hat in der NY-Times einen genauso großartigen wie langen Artikel über Casual Games (er nennt die “Stupid Games”) geschrieben, in dem so tolle Wortschöpfungen wie “homebrew neuroscience” fallen und Sätze wie “a little digital drug you can use to run experiments on your own brain”. Es geht um Facebook-Games, Sucht und Gamification (“the dystopian future of stupid games: amoral corporations hiring teams of behavioral psychologists to laser-target our addiction cycles for profit”) und noch dazu ist der Text nur halb so kulturpessimistisch, wie er klingt.
Außerdem hat er ein integriertes “stupid Game”, mit dem man den Artikel zerballern kann. Ich kann das grade nicht testen, weil ich an diesem dermaßen lahmen stupid Rechner im Netzcafé sitze, dessen Browser das Wort HTML5 nichtmal richtig rendern kann – aber laut diesem Posting ist das so.
Game-studies scholars (there are such things) like to point out that games tend to reflect the societies in which they are created and played. Monopoly, for instance, makes perfect sense as a product of the 1930s — it allowed anyone, in the middle of the Depression, to play at being a tycoon. Risk, released in the 1950s, is a stunningly literal expression of cold-war realpolitik. Twister is the translation, onto a game board, of the mid-1960s sexual revolution. One critic called it “sex in a box.”
Tetris was invented exactly when and where you would expect — in a Soviet computer lab in 1984 — and its game play reflects this origin. The enemy in Tetris is not some identifiable villain (Donkey Kong, Mike Tyson, Carmen Sandiego) but a faceless, ceaseless, reasonless force that threatens constantly to overwhelm you, a churning production of blocks against which your only defense is a repetitive, meaningless sorting. It is bureaucracy in pure form, busywork with no aim or end, impossible to avoid or escape. And the game’s final insult is that it annihilates free will. Despite its obvious futility, somehow we can’t make ourselves stop rotating blocks. Tetris, like all the stupid games it spawned, forces us to choose to punish ourselves.
2003 wurde das Massachusetts Mental Health Center nach über 90 Jahren abgerissen und in Gedenken an das Gebäude wurde Künstlerin Anna Schuleit mit einer Aktion beautragt und die füllte die komplette mit Blumen. Colossal hat bislang unveröffentlichte Bilder und ein kleines Interview mit der Dame:
In 2003 a building housing the Massachusetts Mental Health Center (MMHC) was slated for demolition to make way for updated facilities. The closure was a time for reflection and remembrance as the MMHC had been in operation for over 9 decades and had touched countless thousands of patients and employees alike, and the pending demolition presented a unique problem. How does one memorialize a building impossibly rich with a history of both hope and sadness, and do it in a way that reflects not only the past but also the future? And could this memorial be open to the public, not as a speech, or series of informational plaques, but as an experience worthy of they building’s unique story?
To answer that question artist Anna Schuleit was commissioned to do the impossible. After an initial tour of the facility she was struck not with what she saw but with what she didn’t see: the presence of life and color. While historically a place of healing, the drab interior, worn hallways, and dull paint needed a respectful infusion of hope. With a limited budget and only three months of planning Schuleit and an enormous team of volunteers executed a massive public art installation called Bloom. The concept was simple but absolutely immense in scale. Nearly 28,000 potted flowers would fill almost every square foot of the MMHC including corridors, stairwells, offices and even a swimming pool, all of it brought to life with a sea of blooms.
Faces in Places ist eine alte Internet-Meme, basierend auf der gleichnamigen Website, die wiederum auf dem alten psychologischen Prinzip Pareidolia fusst: Gesichter in Gegenständen sehen. Kann man machen. Viel spannender finde ich allerdings die Idee von Greg Borenstein, der eine Facetracking-Software über sämtliche Bilder einer ähnlichen Flickr-Gruppe laufen lies um zu sehen, ob die in den Fotos ebenfalls Gesichter erkennt.
Facial recognition techniques give computers their own flavor of pareidolia. In addition to responding to actual human faces, facial recognition systems, just like the human vision system, sometimes produce false positives, latching onto some set of features in the image as matching their model of a face. Rather than the millions of years of evolution that shapes human vision, their pareidolia is based on the details of their algorithms and the vicissitudes of the training data they’ve been exposed to.
Their pareidolia is different from ours. Different things trigger it.
I decided to run all of the images from the Hello Little Fella Flickr group through FaceTracker and record the result. These images induce pareidolia in us, but would they do the same to the machine?
Brian Basham im Independent über Psychopathen im Finanzsektor. Dass Bankster im psychologischen Profil Gemeinsamkeiten mit Psychopathen aufweisen, das wusste ich. Ich wusste aber nicht, dass Investmentbanken gezielt nach solchen Leuten suchen und dazu genau jene Profile benutzen. WTF?!
In Jon Ronson’s widely acclaimed book The Psychopath Test, Professor Robert Hare told the author: “I should have spent some time inside the Stock Exchange as well. Serial killer psychopaths ruin families. Corporate and political and religious psychopaths ruin economies. They ruin societies.”
Cut to a pleasantly warm evening in Bahrain. My companion, a senior UK investment banker and I, are discussing the most successful banking types we know and what makes them tick. I argue that they often conform to the characteristics displayed by social psychopaths. To my surprise, my friend agrees.
He then makes an astonishing confession: “At one major investment bank for which I worked, we used psychometric testing to recruit social psychopaths because their characteristics exactly suited them to senior corporate finance roles.”
Here was one of the biggest investment banks in the world seeking psychopaths as recruits.
Daniel schickt mir „eine Publikation von Barrett Klein aus der Nachbar-Arbeitsgruppe hier: The Curious Connection Between Insects and Dreams. [Klein ist] ein ziemlich durchgeknallter Künstler und Wissenschaftler der sich vor allem mit Schlaf bei Insekten beschäftigt. Ein Blick auf seine Homepage pupating.org lohnt sich auch. Ich habe mir sagen lassen, dass er zur Weihnachtsfeier heute Abend Ameisen rösten will.“
Ich habe mir das PDF grade runtergeladen und durchgelesen und das ist wirklich extrem interessant, es geht um Kafkas Metamorphosis, Alice in Wonderland, Freud, Insekten und Traumdeutung. Superspannend! Hier das Abstract:
A majority of humans spend their waking hours surrounded by insects, so it should be no surprise that insects also appear in humans’ dreams as we sleep. Dreaming about insects has a peculiar history, marked by our desire to explain a dream’s significance and by the tactic of evoking emotions by injecting insects in dream-related works of art, film, music, and literature. I surveyed a scattered literature for examples of insects in dreams, first from the practices of dream interpretation, psychiatry, and scientific study, then from fictional writings and popular culture, and finally in the etymology of entomology by highlighting insects with dream-inspired Latinate names. A wealth of insects in dreams, as documented clinically and culturally, attests to the perceived relevance of dreams and to the ubiquity of insects in our lives.
Hier die Tabelle aus dem PDF mit den Bedeutungen einzelner Insektenarten in Träumen, von offensichtlichen Deutungen abgesehen (Schmetterlinge und Marienkäfer stehen für Schönheit, Moskitos für „Someone has been draining dreamer of energy“) sind da doch einige Überraschungen dabei:
Termiten stehen für „Attack to your soul or to your being“ und Gottesanbeterinnen für „Involved in destructive relationship; dreamer behaving deviously“. Wie gesagt: Superinteressant!
Mindhacks hat eine 1973er Studie über die Psychologie von Graffiti (die Kritzeleien, nicht Streetart) gefunden und darin obige Tabelle, die Klosprüche aus Pompeii, die nach dem Untergang beim Ausbruch des Vesuvs 79 in die Wände eingebacken wurden, mit denen aus dem Los Angeles von 1965 vergleicht. Erstaunlich, dass es damals schon „Wer das hier liesst ist doof“-Sprüche gab und noch erstaunlicher, dass die sich in zweitausend Jahren praktisch nicht verändert haben. Und „The risen flesh commands: Let there be love“ ist jawohl mal ganz, ganz großartig.
I’ve just found a wonderful 1973 study on the psychoanalysis of graffiti that discusses how unconscious desires might be expressed through public scrawlings. It has a completely charming table that compares graffiti from A.D. 79 Pompeii with 1960′s Los Angeles to demonstrate the similarity of themes across the centuries.
The author concludes that “aggressive-destructive and incorporative wishes are similarly satisfied by the wall writer at the expense of the wall owner” although overtly sexual images should be considered as definitely expressing sexual themes.
Michael Oehler von der Macromedia Uni in Köln und Christoph Reuter der Uni Wien haben untersucht, warum Ihr das Geräusch kratzender Fingernägel auf Schultafeln nicht ertragen könnt. Ich hab’ mit diesem Sound ja kein Problem, warum auch immer. Bei was ich allerdings zitternd in Embryonalstellung verfalle und mich danach drei Minuten lang nicht mehr bewegen kann: Der Sound, den vollgeschwitzte Handoberflächen machen, wenn sie über eine glatte Tischoberfläche schubbern. Alleine beim Gedanken daran zieht sich mir alles zusammen. People are strange.
Michael Oehler of the Macromedia University for Media and Communication in Cologne, Germany, and Christoph Reuter of the University of Vienna […] found that disturbing sounds do cause a measurable physical reaction, with skin conductivity changing significantly, and that the frequencies involved with unpleasant sounds also lie firmly within the range of human speech — between 2,000 and 4,000Hz. Removing those frequencies from the sound made them much easier to listen to. But, interestingly, removing the noisy, scraping part of the sound made little difference.
A powerful psychological component was identified. If the listeners knew that the sound was fingernails on the chalkboard, they rated it as more unpleasant than if they were told it was from a musical composition. Even when they thought it was from music, however, their skin conductivity still changed consistently, suggesting that the physical part of the response remained.
The Psychologist hat einen sehr schönen, umfassend und trotzdem gar nicht mal so langen Artikel darüber, warum wir gerne Horrorfilme ansehen und welche psychologischen Trigger die so auslösen. Ich zitiere mal nur das Intro, Ihr solltet aber echt das komplette Ding lesen, das wird noch sehr viel interessanter.
Fear coils in your stomach and clutches at your heart. It’s an unpleasant emotion we usually do our best to avoid. Yet across the world and through time people have been drawn irresistibly to stories designed to scare them. Writers like Edgar Allen Poe, H.P. Lovecraft, Stephen King, and Clive Barker continue to haunt the popular consciousness. Far longer ago, listeners sat mesmerised by violent, terrifying tales like Beowulf and Homer’s Odyssey.
‘If you go to your video store and rent a comedy from Korea, it’s not going to make any sense to you at all,’ says literature scholar Mathias Clasen based at Aarhus University, ‘whereas if you rent a local horror movie from Korea you’ll instantaneously know not just that it’s a horror movie, but you’ll have a physiological reaction to it, indicative of the genre.’
Fresh from a study visit to the Center for Evolutionary Psychology at the University of California, Santa Barbara, Clasen believes the timeless, cross-cultural appeal of horror fiction says something important about humans, and in turn, insights from evolutionary psychology can make sense of why horror takes the form it does. ‘You can use horror fiction and its lack of historical and cultural variance as an indication that there is such a thing as human nature,’ he says.
Sehr schönes Projekt von Jon Crispin, der nach der Schließung des Willard Asylums Zugang zu den Koffern erhielt, die die Patienten dort für den Tag ihrer Entlassung mitgebracht hatten. Da die Anstalt eine geschlossene war, blieben viele der Koffer einfach im Keller rumstehen, jahrzehntelang. Die fotografiert er jetzt und hat dazu eine Doku am Start, die bereits über Kickstarter finanziert wurde, alle bisherigen Bilder kann man sich auf auf seinem Blog anschauen.
In 1995, the New York State Museum was moving items out of the Willard Psychiatric Center in Willard, NY which was being closed by the State Office of Mental Health. It would eventually become a state-run drug rehabilitation center. Craig Williams and his staff became aware of an attic full of suitcases in the pathology lab building. The cases were put into storage when their owners were admitted to Willard sometime between 1910 and the 1960s. And since the facility was set up to help people with chronic mental illness, these folks never left. An exhibit of a small selection of the cases was produced by the Museum and was on display in Albany in 2003. It was very moving to read the stories of these people, and to see objects from their lives before they became residents of Willard.
I have been given the incredible opportunity to photograph these cases and their contents. To me, they open a small window into the lives of some of the people who lived at the facility. I have settled on the idea of shooting the suitcases as they have been preserved by the museum, since part of my goal with this project is to show the care that was taken in archiving these materials.
Vorher auf Nerdcore:
Abandoned Asylums, deren verlorene Koffer und die Bibliothek aus Staub