Jan 9, 2015
Can other people's expectations of you alter what you can do physically? Alix Spiegel and Lulu Miller of NPR's new radio show and podcast Invisibilia investigate that question – specifically, they look into something that sounds impossible: if people’s expectations can change whether a blind man can see.
Invisibilia’s first season of six episodes is running on hundreds of public radio stations. Check your local station’s website to see when they might be carrying it. The podcast is at npr.org/invisibilia, or wherever you get your podcasts.
- NPR Science reporters Alix Spiegel and Lulu Miller explain to Ira Glass how they smuggled a rat into NPR headquarters in Washington, and ran an unscientific version of a famous experiment first done by Psychology Professor Robert Rosenthal. It showed how people’s thoughts about rats could affect their behavior. Another scientist, Carol Dweck, explains that it’s true for people too: expectations affect students, children, soldiers, in measurable ways. (6 minutes)