The Black and White Fallacy

the-black-and-whiteWhy do you try to drain the world of color when backed into a rhetorical corner? Why do you have such a hard time realizing that you have suggested the world is devoid of nuance when you are in the heat of an argument, reducing all every wavelength to black and white, and all choices to A or B?
In this episode, you’ll learn from three experts in logic and arguing why human brains are prone to the black and white fallacy and the false dichotomies it generates. You’ll learn how to spot this fallacy, what to do when someone uses it against you, and how to avoid committing it yourself.

You Are Not So Smart

Japanese Zen Garden, photo by Andreas Øverland Japanese Zen Garden, photo by Andreas Øverland

Meditation Under Investigation

Silicon Valley CEOs, scruffy hippies, and Tibetan monks alike describe meditation as blissful and life-changing, but what does the science say? Can it reduce stress, increase your attention, and improve mental health — or is all this focus on breathing just a bunch of hot air? Sit back, get comfortable, focus your mind and let the experts to sort it out for you. Among them are Tim Ferriss, Professor Gaelle Desbordes, Dr. Clifford Saron, and Dr. Britta Hölzel.

Science Vs

The Value of Deep Work in the Age of Distraction

the-value-of-deep-workHave you ever spent an entire day at work feeling really busy and yet at the end of the day you realize you weren’t very productive at all? And when you resolve to do better the next day and dig into deeper work, you find that you can’t focus. You still have an overpowering itch to check your email or scroll through your Instagram feed.
If that sounds familiar, this show is for you. Our guest, Cal Newport, is the author of So Good They Can’t Ignore You on how you shouldn’t necessarily follow your passion. He now has a new book called Deep Work: Rules for Focused Success in a Distracted World, and it’s just as insightful and paradigm-shifting as his last. In this podcast Cal and Brett discuss why being able to concentrate deeply on hard tasks is the skill that will set you apart in today’s marketplace and how deep work can lead to a more meaningful life.

The Art of Manliness

Breaking Bad Habits

How we can regain control of our impulses – whether it’s a compulsion to constantly check social media, binge eating, smoking, excessive drinking, or any other behaviors, we may find ourselves uncontrollably repeating – explained by an associate professor in medicine and psychiatry at UMass Medical School, Dr. Judson Brewer. He has spent more than 20 years researching addiction and recently published “The Craving Mind: From Cigarettes to Smartphones to Love – Why We Get Hooked and How We Can Break Bad Habits.”

KERA’s Think

1904 Print Honore Daumier Emma I Love You Romantic Couple

Are We Biased about Love?

Does romance makes us irrationally optimistic about our chances of happiness, despite all the evidence to the contrary? Are we just crazy when it comes to love? And if so, is that a good or a bad thing? David Edmonds speaks to Professor Lisa Bortolotti – philosopher of the cognitive sciences at the University of Birmingham. She focuses on the philosophy of psychology and psychiatry. She is also interested in biomedical ethics.

Philosophy 247

Malcolm Gladwell (left) and Dave Reid coming into the finish at an Ontario school race in 1978. Malcolm Gladwell (left) and Dave Reid coming into the finish at an Ontario school race in 1978.

Malcolm Gladwell Argues for Mediocrity

Malcolm Gladwell in a conversation on running fast, satire as a weapon, Daniel Ellsberg and Edward Snowden, Harvard’s under-theorized endowment, why early childhood intervention is overrated, long-distance running, and Malcolm’s happy risk-averse career going from one “fur-lined rat hole to the next.”

Conversations with Tyler

A Brief History of Failure

“Success is not final, failure is not fatal,” said Winston Churchill. The American satirist Joe Queenan disagrees and rails against the very idea of failure. His sharpest attack is reserved for the supposed romance of defeat. From Braveheart in Scotland via the heretic Cathars in France to the pretend soldiers in Virginia still re-enacting the American Civil War, Queenan explores whether there may be something noble about losing a war.
“I’m in the south, at one of the many re-enactment battles of the American civil war that go on every year. Thousands have turned up to re-fight a war they lost. We don’t do this in the north – it would be odd, and divisive, perhaps even inflammatory. But the memories of a conflict that took place over 150 years down here – they don’t go away.”

Archive on 4

Does Empathy Have a Design Flaw?

Empathy leads us to make flawed moral decisions, claims Yale psychologist Paul Bloom. But others think that empathy is a valuable tool. In this episode, two experts — Chuck Pezeshski and Indi Young — argue for the role of empathy in solving engineering problems, in thinking through complex systems, and designing highly desirable products.

To the Best of Our Knowledge

Blindfolded women pointing to one of three balls that are on a table

Hackademics: Psychics and the Mainstream Sciences

After years of unusual episodes, Anita went to the doctor and was told there was nothing medically wrong with her. “She had a gift,” she was told, and she was sent down the street to an ESP lab. Parapsychology is the scientific study of telepathy, clairvoyance, telekinesis, precognition, and spirits. Or is it? The field has been pushed to the fringes of science for decades now. In two episodes, I first follow the study of psychics, and then the mainstream sciences of human nature, to see if they differ enough to make one worthy of belief, and the other scorn.

Hi-Phi Nation

Dumb and Happy Pharaoh. Illustration by LORRAINE ALVAREZ POSEN Dumb and Happy Pharaoh. Illustration by LORRAINE ALVAREZ POSEN


We are often told that we can be happy if we try hard enough. By shifting our mindset, changing our lifestyles, or even writing a gratitude journal – happiness is waiting for all of us! But, what does science say? To find out, science journalist Wendy Zukerman speaks to Prof. Paul Frijters, Ass. Prof. Dianne Vella Brodrick and Dr. Emiliana Simon-Thomas. We’re also joined by the author of “The Happiness Myth”, Jennifer Michael Hecht, as well as comedian Gen Fricker.

Science Vs