This American Life: #555: The Incredible Rarity of Changing Your Mind
April 29, 2015 12:44 PM - Subscribe

We tend to give credit to those who stand by their beliefs. But sometimes it requires even more courage to change them. This week, stories of people reconsidering how they really feel about their enemies, their homes, and themselves. We also talk to a girl named Zalena, who finds herself in a pretty unexpected place.
posted by Gin and Broadband (6 comments total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
My overriding impression of this episode was how much more mature Zalena is than me.
posted by Gin and Broadband at 12:50 PM on April 29, 2015

Yeah. Man, did I feel sorry for her having moved to Whittier...especially since I'd heard of Whittier.
posted by jenfullmoon at 2:08 PM on April 29, 2015 [1 favorite]

Yes! I live in Anchorage, about an hour away from Whittier. It is a weird place- there's a whole song that starts "Nothing could be shittier than to find yourself in Whittier in the mo-o-thing!" for a reason. I have been there a lot- it is a good place to leave for kayak trips- and about 50% of the time I'm there it feels like it's about 38 degrees and raining, with gale-force winds. I felt for that kid and I am glad she found some happiness and acceptance.
posted by charmedimsure at 7:28 PM on April 29, 2015 [1 favorite]

I was struck by the first piece. The organizing strategy reminded me of Motivational Interviewing which is as far as I know the most evidence based strategy for building behavior changes. I couldn't tell if they just stumbled on some of the same techniques or if someone intentionally tried to apply it to that context.

One difference though is the bit about sharing your personal story: You can see why actually meeting a gay person (or person who has had an abortion) and having a low-pressure conversation with them where you understand your impact on their lives would make a big difference. Most people are pretty reasonable, given the opportunity.
posted by latkes at 8:04 AM on May 4, 2015

FPP on retraction of the study the first act is based on.
posted by damayanti at 7:26 AM on May 20, 2015 [2 favorites]

Uh-oh, somewhere Ira Glass is wincing at another retraction again.
posted by jenfullmoon at 1:24 PM on May 20, 2015 [1 favorite]

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