Ottawa's Festival of Ideas Since 1997
Knox Presbyterian Church120 Lisgar Street (at Elgin)

Riveted with Jim Davies

Hosted by Stephen Brockwell

Riveted with Jim Davies

Hosted by Stephen Brockwell
Knox Presbyterian Church
120 Lisgar Street (at Elgin)
Jim Davies

Why do some things pass under the radar of our attention, but other things capture our interest? Why do some religions catch on and others fade away? What makes a story, a movie, or a book riveting? Why do some people keep watching the news even though it makes them anxious?


Join us for a conversation on the subconscious forces that determine what we like and don’t like. Drawing on work from philosophy, anthropology, religious studies, psychology, economics, computer science, and biology, Davies offers a comprehensive explanation to show that in spite of the differences between the many things that we find compelling, they have similar effects on our minds and brains.


Professor Jim Davies’ fascinating and highly accessible book, Riveted: The Science of Why Jokes Make Us Laugh, Movies Make Us Cry, and Religion Makes Us Feel One with the Universe, reveals the evolutionary underpinnings of why we find things compelling, from art to religion and from sports to superstition. Compelling things fit our minds like keys in the ignition, turning us on and keeping us running, and yet we are often unaware of what makes these “keys” fit. 


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