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Empathy, neurochemistry, and the dramatic arc

6 minutes

How the dramatic arc can change our brain chemistry and spur us to action

Paul Zak, professor of economics, psychology and management at Claremont Graduate University in California, is one the founding pioneers of neuroeconomics, an emerging scientific field that traces the biology of decision-making processes and the human brain’s reaction to incentives. In this animated exploration of one of his most illuminating experiments, Zak discusses the surprisingly calculable effects that the classic dramatic arc (exposition/rising action/climax/falling action/denouement) has on our brain chemistry and, ultimately, on our decisions and actions.

Director: Kirby Ferguson

Website: Future of Storytelling

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Essay/
Neuroscience
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Essay/
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