59 episodes

A podcast about understanding human behavior, hosted by Zachary Elwood (twitter: @apokerplayer). Interviews with people from a wide range of fields about how understanding people aids them in their endeavors, with an occasional focus on the psychology of political polarization.

People Who Read People: A Behavior and Psychology Podcast Zachary Elwood

    • Science
    • 4.6 • 73 Ratings

A podcast about understanding human behavior, hosted by Zachary Elwood (twitter: @apokerplayer). Interviews with people from a wide range of fields about how understanding people aids them in their endeavors, with an occasional focus on the psychology of political polarization.

    Rittenhouse verdict reactions and political polarization

    Rittenhouse verdict reactions and political polarization

    Host Zachary Elwood examines liberal reactions about the Rittenhouse verdict and how some of the more extreme and pessimistic reactions may be seen as being caused by political us-vs-them polarization. 

    • 53 min
    The scientific analysis of conversation, with Saul Albert

    The scientific analysis of conversation, with Saul Albert

    A talk with social scientist Saul Albert (saulalbert.net) about conversation analysis — the scientific analysis of talking — and the wider field of ethnomethodology. Topics discussed: what conversation analysis (CA) is and how it's done; some of the interesting findings in CA; Saul's own research; the complexity and difficulty of communication; the role of silence in conversation; transcription/notation methods used; and more.   

    • 1 hr 16 min
    Tracking people over land, aka "sign cutting," with Rob Speiden

    Tracking people over land, aka "sign cutting," with Rob Speiden

    An interview of Rob Speiden, an expert in sign cutting, which is the tracking of humans or animals over the ground using clues of physical disturbance. Rob's site is at www.trackingschool.com. Topics discussed include: common methods of tracking; how tracking is used in search and rescue scenarios; debunking some misconceptions about what's possible with tracking; the importance of being fully aware and open to all sensory input; and interesting stories from his career. 

    • 45 min
    What does research say about how social media affects polarization?, with Emily Kubin

    What does research say about how social media affects polarization?, with Emily Kubin

    A talk with Emily Kubin, who recently, with her co-researcher Christian Von Sikorski, did a comprehensive review of 121 studies on social media effects on political polarization. We talk about her research, why polarization is a problem, the different types of polarization (affective vs ideological), our psychology tendency to become us-versus-them in our thinking, her own opinions on what social media is doing to us, and the mechanisms by which social media may be amplifying polarization. 

    • 49 min
    Understanding behavior and psychology as a professional musician, with Ben Tyler (aka Small Skies)

    Understanding behavior and psychology as a professional musician, with Ben Tyler (aka Small Skies)

    An interview with Ben Tyler, a professional musician and musical educator based in Portland, Oregon, about reading and understanding people in the musical world. Topics include: reading fellow band members' gestures and eye contact in jazz and other musical performances; being able to tell when audiences are having a good time or not; how practicing improvisation can make us more flexible; and the social aspects of the musical world. Ben's personal musical project is called Small Skies. 

    • 50 min
    Nostalgia and our attraction to the past, with Jannine Lasaleta

    Nostalgia and our attraction to the past, with Jannine Lasaleta

    A talk with Jannine Lasaleta, who has researched the psychological effects of nostalgia, including how nostalgic feelings make people more loose and uncaring with money.  We talk about the connection between our desire for nostalgia and our desire to engage in old-fashioned or ancient or "authentic" activities . We talk about how our attraction for these things might be connected to our search for meaning, our desire to have a consistent and stable sense of self, and our attempt to fend off existential anxieties related to meaninglessness and isolation. 

    • 56 min

Customer Reviews

4.6 out of 5
73 Ratings

73 Ratings

3smie ,

One of my top favorite

Binging on this all day for fun. I’m only 3 shows in and feel like I understand myself and others a lot more than I did this morning.

Keep up the good work 👏🏽🧠💡

bruin1962 ,

A Down-to-Earth Intellectual Journey

I have enjoyed listening to this podcast the past few years. I had a role in mitigating workplace conflict via mediation and found the podcast in my quest to improve my skills in interpreting subtext and non-verbal cues. I like Zach's interviewing style and appreciate his efforts to edit each episode to appeal to most listeners. The podcasts have broadened in scope in the past year or so with good results. His humility and curiosity pair nicely and make for pleasant, thought-provoking listening. Keep up the good work!

SocalSum41Fan ,

Cornucopia of Guests discussing hot button issues in academic fashion

Zachary Elwood shows us the deftness for detail and ability to engage in on the spot and unconventional analysis that a professional poker player has, while interviewing guests ranging from political extremists, to political and psychological theorists. He is always well read of his guests going into interviews but isn’t scared to push topics to their most relevant points of discussion relative to today nor challenge guests to find gems of insight that can best be brought out through an interview. One of the best new podcasts out there, especially for those with an interest in social psychology, misinformation, and peak performance through mental training.

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