220 episodes

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

Hidden Brain NPR

    • Science & Medicine
    • 4.6, 18.1K Ratings

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

Customer Reviews

4.6 out of 5
18.1K Ratings

18.1K Ratings

Nadia Rice ,

I love Shankar

Excellent topics and enlightening ideas that appeal to the most human aspects of our nature.

aerabela ,

uneven in research depth and perspective

I like a lot of Hidden Brain and Shankar is a compelling host. The show is necessarily accessible to serve a broad audience and the friendly, conversational tone is inviting. The show does a wonderful job of resisting snobbery and making all interesting life topics relatable. However! I’ve been listening for awhile now and some of the episodes are so one-note and oversimplified it’s cringeworthy. The episode on narcissism and the “IKEA effect” was pretty poorly researched and produced. While the first university researcher made an effort to demonstrate nuance in understandings of narcissism and behavior, the episode comes off as a trite cautionary tale that entirely misunderstands how narcissism functions and what its motivations are. Much more disappointing was presenting the “IKEA effect” as the one and only explanation for tension, frustration and conflict around relationships and our sense of labor and ownership. In a show that often runs longer, I would think with topics as important as these, some dimensionality to the research would be warranted. This is where the show suffers, and much more so recently. It used to be better at reveling in the messiness of culture, resisting the urge to create a neat narrative with one answer for why life is the way it is.

nbmerrill ,

Interesting episode on birthdays and names.

My mother died on my parents wedding anniversary. My father dies on his birthday. I’ve always wondered about statistics on deaths occurring a bit like being drawn to a special day to die.

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