Big Think and the Floating University Present a Lecture With Paul Bloom

Are people naturally good or evil? How much of our mental life is unconscious? Are our desires hard-wired by evolution?

On the evening of Monday, March 21st, renowned psychologist and Yale University professor Paul Bloom will explore the big ideas in psychology through three case studies that examine our notions of compassion, racism and sex. This event, the first in a series of lectures hosted by The Floating University in partnership with Big Think will take place at the Tribeca Performing Arts Center in New York City at 7:30pm. From the origins of human kindness in babies and adults, to the social psychology and neuroscience behind racism, and the role our desires and cultural milieu play in choosing our mate, Bloom will provide meaningful insights into how psychological research can enhance and improve our everyday lives. 

Big Think viewers in the New York metropolitan area are invited to reserve free tickets to the lecture by visiting the Tribeca PAC's website and using the discount code FUPB.  

The Floating University is a newly formed educational entity bringing the finest teachers across the spectrum into a single lecture series that serves up a mezze-plate introduction to the world’s most important ideas and disciplines. All of the lectures in the series will produced and filmed by Big Think. This is the only time any of the lectures will be presented to the public—for one night only.

Paul Bloom is a fellow of the American Psychological Society and the author of three books, including the recent "How Pleasure Works: The New Science of Why We Like What We Like." He has been published in The New York Times, The Guardian, American Scientist, and The Atlantic, among other publications. He has appeared on and is a regular on National Public Radio.

Bloom has researched everything from religion and moral reasoning to children’s understanding of fiction and art. Last time he visited Big Think's studio he explained his most unusual project to date: an experiment involving broccoli that tested how much young children are willing to suffer in order to punish strangers.   


LinkedIn meets Tinder in this mindful networking app

Swipe right to make the connections that could change your career.

Getty Images
Swipe right. Match. Meet over coffee or set up a call.

No, we aren't talking about Tinder. Introducing Shapr, a free app that helps people with synergistic professional goals and skill sets easily meet and collaborate.

Keep reading Show less

34 years ago, a KGB defector chillingly predicted modern America

A disturbing interview given by a KGB defector in 1984 describes America of today and outlines four stages of mass brainwashing used by the KGB.

Politics & Current Affairs
  • Bezmenov described this process as "a great brainwashing" which has four basic stages.
  • The first stage is called "demoralization" which takes from 15 to 20 years to achieve.
  • According to the former KGB agent, that is the minimum number of years it takes to re-educate one generation of students that is normally exposed to the ideology of its country.
Keep reading Show less

Douglas Rushkoff – It’s not the technology’s fault

It's up to us humans to re-humanize our world. An economy that prioritizes growth and profits over humanity has led to digital platforms that "strip the topsoil" of human behavior, whole industries, and the planet, giving less and less back. And only we can save us.

Think Again Podcasts
  • It's an all-hands-on-deck moment in the arc of civilization.
  • Everyone has a choice: Do you want to try to earn enough money to insulate yourself from the world you're creating— or do you want to make the world a place you don't have to insulate yourself from?
Keep reading Show less