Smarten up with surrealism

Reading Kafka or watching Lynch can boost your intelligence?
Isabella Rossellini  David Lynch's Blue Velvet (1986)
Rebecca Knight reports on the possible benefits of catching up on your Kafka, or settling down to an evening of David Lynch films:
This just in from the department of…Who knew?

Reading a book by Franz Kafka or watching a movie by director David Lynch just might make you smarter.

According to researchers at UC Santa Barbara and the University of British Columbia, exposure to the surrealism in, say, Lynch’s “Blue Velvet” enhances the cognitive mechanisms that oversee implicit learning functions.

The idea is that when you’re exposed to a meaning threat - something that fundamentally does not make sense - your brain is going to respond by looking for some other kind of structure within your environment. “And, it turns out, that structure can be completely unrelated to the meaning threat,” says Travis Proulx, one of the study’s co-authors. [Read More]