Blink outside the box: RadioLab has a brilliant short podcast on the psychological role of blinks, based on a study that found that when watching a film our blinks are remarkably synchronised.
The programme dispels the myth that blinking serves only to keep our eyes wet as apparently studies have shown that we don’t blink any more or less in different humidities.
Instead, it explores a fascinating new study that found that blinks became synchronised when watching a film of another person, but not when watching landscapes or listening to stories.
Interestingly, blinks seems to be controlled so they occur at the start and end of meaning actions.
We know that blinking is also tied to some quite fundamental functions of the brain. For example, the higher the amount of spontaneous blinking you do, the higher the amount of dopamine you produce in the striatum, a deep brain area.
As always the RadioLab programme is gripping audio velvet. I really recommend some headphones and 15 minutes of undisturbed time to lose yourself.
This article taken from MindHacks where you’ll find all the relevant links.