November 22, 2005

This Is Your Brain Under Hypnosis

Today’s New York Times reports that hypnosis may, in fact, change perception in the brain. Sandra Blakeslee reports on a study which supports this. Dr. Amir Raz demonstrated that the Stroop effect was “obliterated” in the “highly hypnotizable people” he studied.

Read the popular version in the Times article; read the full study in the July 12 issue of the The Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences:
Hypnotic suggestion reduces conflict in the human brain.” by Amir Raz, Jin Fan, and Michael I. Posner PNAS 2005 102: 9978-9983. (note: this article is free!)

Finally, did you know that in the 19th century, “physicians in India successfully used hypnosis as anesthesia, even for limb amputations.” Yow!

1 comment:

Vampire Librarian said...

Hi CogSci Librarian,

I'm really honored that you'd want to use an entry of mine in a class. Please go ahead, and may I also recommend Feel-good Librarian's blog: FGL has a lot of good stories of patron interactions that are truly incredible. FGL has dealt with some tough situations with class and caring.

Regarding hypnosis, I read in Skeptical Inquirer (sorry can't give volume and issue number) that people's suceptivity to hypnosis can be gauged by how far their eyes can roll up. I thought this was very intriguing. Do you know anything about this?