For the spring of 2017 we are reading : Sleights of Mind: What the Neuroscience of Magic Reveals about Our Everyday Deceptions by Stephen L. Macknik and Susana Martinez-Conde
This book is the result of the authors’ yearlong, world-wide exploration of magic and how its principles apply to our behavior. Magic tricks fool us because humans have hardwired processes of attention and awareness that are hackable―a good magician uses your mind’s own intrinsic properties against you in a form of mental jujitsu. Now magic can reveal how our brains work in everyday situations. For instance, if you’ve ever bought an expensive item you’d sworn you’d never buy, the salesperson was probably a master at creating the “illusion of choice,” a core technique of magic. The implications of neuromagic go beyond illuminating our behavior; early research points to new approaches for everything from the diagnosis of autism to marketing techniques and education. Sleights of Mind makes neuroscience fun and accessible by unveiling the key connections between magic and the mind.
We will meet Sunday nights, February 12, March 19, and April 2 from 7:00 to 8:30 in room 126 Winston Hall. We will discuss chapters 1-4 the first night, 5-8 the second and 9-epilog the third. Please come with 2 questions from the reading.