Hidden Brain

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34130 reviews
This podcast has
402 episodes
Date created
Average duration
50 min.
Release period
7 days


Shankar Vedantam uses science and storytelling to reveal the unconscious patterns that drive human behavior, shape our choices and direct our relationships.

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The Premonition
When Paul Burnham was a teenager, he received what felt like a premonition: he would die at the age of 54. Now, he's 54. This week, what his story of confronting death reveals about life.
Why You're Smarter Than You Think
From the time we are schoolchildren, we are ranked and sorted based on how smart we are. But what if our assumptions about intelligence limit our potential? This week, psychologist Scott Barry Kaufman proposes a more expansive notion of what it means to be "smart."
Do Less
The human drive to invent new things has led to pathbreaking achievements in medicine, science and society. But our desire for innovation can keep us from seeing one of the most powerful paths to progress: subtraction. Engineer Leidy Klotz says sometimes the best way forward involves removing, streamlining and simplifying things.
Money 2.0: Let's Go Shopping!
What do the things you buy say about you? Many of us like to think of ourselves as immune to slick advertising and celebrity endorsements. But like it or not, we're communicating messages about ourselves every day with the clothes we wear, the cars we drive, and the products we use. In the final installment of our Money 2.0 series, we revisit favorite conversations with researchers Americus Reed and Neeru Paharia. We'll consider how companies create a worldview around the products they sell, and then get us to make those products a part of who we are.
Money 2.0: The Rich and the Rest of Us
Where do you stand on the income ladder? Do you think of yourself as rich, as poor, or as somewhere in between? Our perceptions of wealth — our own, and other people's — can affect us more profoundly than we realize. This week in our Money 2.0 series, we revisit two of our favorite conversations about wealth and inequality. Sociologist Brook Harrington takes us inside the lives of the über wealthy and the people who manage their fortunes. Then, psychologist Keith Payne shares surprising research about income inequality and how it shapes our minds.
Money 2.0: Emotional Currency
What’s the point of money? The answer might seem obvious: we need it to get paid for our work and to buy the things we need. But there’s also a deeper way to look at the role of money in our lives. This week in our Money 2.0 series, we revisit a favorite 2020 episode for an anthropologist’s take on the origin story of money. What if the cash and coins we carry are not just tools for transactions, but manifestations of human relationships?
Money 2.0: Why We Bust Our Budgets
Have you had a recent surprise expense? You're not alone. More than half of American households report facing an unplanned financial shock in the last year. This week, in the second part of our new "Money 2.0" series, psychologist Abigail Sussman points out our blindspots around money, and how we can be smarter about spending and saving.
Money 2.0: Rewrite Your Money Story
Money worries are one of the biggest sources of anxiety in the lives of Americans. This week, we kick off our new "Money 2.0" series with psychologist Brad Klontz. He says that while external economic forces often shape our financial well-being, our unconscious beliefs about money also contribute to how well we manage our money.
The Logic of Rage
Neuroscientist Doug Fields was on a trip to Europe when a pickpocket stole his wallet. Doug, normally mild-mannered, became enraged — and his fury turned him into a stranger to himself. This week, we revisit a favorite 2020 episode about the secret logic of irrational anger.
When Doing Right Feels Wrong
Have you ever been in a position where you had to choose between someone you care about and a value that you hold dear? This week, we tell the story of a Detroit police officer who found himself in this sort of dilemma, forced to choose between people he loved and the oath he swore to serve his community. What happens in our minds when we have to decide what is right and what is wrong?
A Conspiracy of Silence
We all self-censor at times. We keep quiet at dinner with our in-laws, or nod passively in a work meeting. But what happens when we take this deception a step further, and pretend we believe the opposite of what we really feel? In this favorite episode from 2020, economist and political scientist Timur Kuran explains how our personal, professional and political lives are shaped by the fear of what other people think.
How Rude!
It’s not your imagination: rudeness appears to be on the rise. Witnessing rude behavior — whether it's coming from angry customers berating a store clerk or airline passengers getting into a fistfight — can have long-lasting effects on our minds. But behavioral scientist Christine Porath says there are ways to shield ourselves from the toxic effects of incivility.

Podcast Reviews

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4.6 out of 5
34130 reviews
worlchanger 2022/06/24
This Show ??
This show has served a calming filler for my long commute to work, therapy when I could no longer afford it (seriously), and answers to many questions...
Sally Sunshine Eclipsed 2022/06/20
Thank you
In my extreme loneliness and sudden amputation from my former life I find intellectual comraderie and uplift from spirit of this gifted host. Thank y...
Anita - R 2022/06/22
Less music Less bad sound effects Please
TheWordgeek 2022/06/15
Every episode worthwhile….
There are few podcasts that I look forward to as much as Hidden Brain. Sure, the host has a sexy accent, but if he didn’t have CONTENT, he couldn’t ho...
Springle1987 2022/06/14
Great Episode!
I really enjoyed the latest episode about ‘your smarter than you think’. I really related to the guest who was telling his story. I feel I went throug...
gab0908 2022/06/03
Speaks to my soul
I can’t express enough how helpful listening to a lot of these episodes has been for me. Never stop doing what you’re doing! I wish more content in th...
Beccaaz746 2022/06/08
Adam Toledo
“Scared 13 yr old boy” was practicing using a gun to murder people, in the middle of the night. His family had already abandoned him and he was train...
Eliserator 2022/05/31
Every episode is so well done!
fan25433333 2022/06/01
Don’t play old stuff
Play new stuff. We know where to get old shows.
kmwaamwk 2022/05/30
Favorite podcast! Lots of “revisiting old episodes”
My #1 absolute favorite podcast! I look forward to Monday’s for New episodes but they seem to “revisit” old episodes very often…. I kind of thing mayb...


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