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Neuroskeptic iconNeuroskepticBy NeuroskepticJanuary 2, 2009 10:30 PM


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From the British Medical Journal, a man describes his wife's experience with depression and its succesful treatment with ECT. ("To me as a carer, it feels as^ if some malign, intangible entity has attached itself to my^ wife, constantly attacking her. Ana and I are very close: I^ can feel her mood as soon as I enter the same room as her, and^ when things are bad, the depression is like an oppressive weight^ that lies on us both. It sucks the colour out of life.^ I’ve never seen mentioned in any medical text just how^ truly terrifying depression is. It’s very, very scary,^ watching the one you love withdraw from life and turn into an^ inert stranger—and you can never, ever, relax, because^ you know that the spectre of suicide is always hanging over^ all your lives.")

Are Humans Hard-Wired to Ignore the Threat of Climate Change? - Excellent article from a few months back discussing research on risk perception and how it might be applied to make people take global warming seriously - basically, you need to scare people and then tell them how to solve the problem. Politicians have known that for a long time before psychologists said it, of course, but some of the research is interesting.

"If I look at the mass I will never act" - Psychologist Paul Slovic on the psychology of famine and genocide. Apparantly, people will donate more money to feed one child than they will to feed two children. Stalin knew that one death is a tragedy, a million deaths is a statistic - now we know that even two deaths is a statistic.

If you liked those last two, Greater Good Magazine has lots more of that kind of thing. It's from Berkeley and it's got a bit of a "positive psychology" vibe, but it's full of good stuff.

Finally, if you need cheering up, here's Chris Rock on a promising new antidepressant...

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