Category: Video

“The Point of Psychology (and How it Gets Missed)”: Director’s cut

Okay, the official movie — featuring full slides and audio — has been made…

Thanks to Chris Noone for the soundtrack (from the official PSI EGG talking-head version); background to the keynote as per here and here.

As a reminder, the audience was a national conference of early career psychology graduates, the conference theme concerned the place of psychology in society, and the abstract I set for myself was as follows:

The Point of Psychology (and How it Gets Missed)

The point of psychology is, and always has been, to use scientific methods to resolve uncertainties in our understanding of the human condition. Nonetheless, many audiences seek to imbue psychology with some kind of mission to “improve people’s well-being” (whatever that means), to “encourage positive behaviours” (whatever they are), or to cure mental ill-health by means of laying-on-of-hands.

In addition, psychology often projects itself as a politically liberal (as opposed to conservative) discipline, despite being an overwhelmingly white, middle class, middle-aged, male academic field shaped by a century of Euro-American hegemony.

This talk will examine these themes, and include at least one joke.

To be fair, people did laugh at the joke.


Who cares about these darned rabbits?


When I first sniffed the internet buzz surrounding a woman being attacked by a stampede of rabbits, I admit I was both confused and intrigued. But basically, this is what happened:

And this is all.

The International Business Times reckoned this woman had “a lucky escape.” Here’s their moment-by-moment account of her horrifying ordeal:

Continue reading “Who cares about these darned rabbits?”

Zoology special: Entirely justified post featuring talking squirrel

Here’s this guy:

I just wanted an excuse to post that Vine (on what is supposed to be a science blog). I was wondering what I could say. Then I looked up squirrels. Apparently, they chew incessantly — just like the guy in the Vine — because their teeth keep growing. Otherwise, they’d end up with teeth so long they’d basically bite themselves to death.

Also, their top and bottom teeth interlock so that, as well as keeping them non-chokingly short, they’re kept nicely sharpened. So they need to keep moving and chewing. Just like the guy in the Vine.

In fact, squirrels are rodents, and the word rodents comes from the Latin rodere, which means “to gnaw”. They are gnawers: they are defined by their gnawing. Just like the guy in the Vine.

"Dendition specialized for gnawing" (Pic: Wikipedia)

“Dendition specialized for gnawing” (Pic: Wikipedia)

They can’t actually talk though. That bit’s not entirely scientifically plausible.

Still, overall that’s more than I’d expected to come up with.

Tomorrow: “Why bunnies snuggle!”

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