Ever wondered about the psychology of literature or stories? Or how a certain narrative might change our attitude or perspective?
This free course, What happens to you when you read? explores our relationship with books and the ways in which engaging with fiction in particular can change readers.
Research shows that as well as providing us with a form of entertainment, the activity of reading can bring benefits to our wellbeing in challenging times. People have experienced and explored these benefits throughout history.
A good story can entertain us, develop our creativity and imagination, and transport us to different fictional worlds, but it can change us psychologically as well.
As you work your way through this course, you will have the chance to participate in both reading and writing activities and experience for yourself what happens to you when you read.
If you're currently engaged in strategic decision-making, or will be in the future, or just want to learn more about strategy, this module will stimulate your imagination and inform your judgement. An understanding of the frameworks of strategy and an ability to use them imaginatively will help your organisation survive in the longer-term and perform its role more effectively. You will not be expected merely to 'learn' the frameworks, but to critically analyse and comment on them, sometimes in collaboration with fellow students. The module will also help you contribute to and better understand the dialogue of strategy at a variety of levels in your organisation.
This free course, Minds and mental phenomena: An introduction, examines the philosophical questions surrounding the mind. You will examine how beliefs have changed over the centuries and be able to contrast the views of Descartes with more modern ideas.
Charles Dickens was not only the most famous writer of his day, but, during the second half of his career, also a prominent public figure known through his readings and speeches. He cultivated, and relished, a close relationship with the vast audiences who came to hear him, in towns and cities throughout Britain, and in the USA. His readings appealed to his own deep instinct in support of the development of the imagination of the people, and also acknowledged the common Victorian pastime of domestic literary recitation. As an actor he took on the visage and gestures as well as the voice of his characters; audiences were spellbound.
Ever wanted to understand the key themes driving over five hundred years of European history? In this album, architecture reveals the social, religious and economic fortunes of some of the most influential people between 1400 and 1900. By the end of the 19th century Queen Victoria presided over the vast British Empire. She looked out from London, the heart of her empire, with its buildings echoing Imperial Rome. Brussels’ architecture, like London’s, was also designed to show the world the power and imagination of its 19th century king, Leopold the 1st. Architecture was also used in the medieval period to show devotion to God or simply to signal wealth and authority. The wealthy French nobleman, Jacques Coeur, completed his imposing palace in 1450 and Richard Beauchamp, Earl of Warwick’s chapel not only reflects contemporary ideas about death and salvation but also the status of one of the most powerful English noblemen of the 15th century. This material is taken from The Open University course A200 Exploring history: medieval to modern 1400 - 1900.
We know drunk-driving causes death on the roads, but how does taking drugs like cannabis affect your driving skills? This album offers a chance to see how psychologists perform experiments which measure how much cannabis distorts a normal state of consciousness. Tracks 5-8 explore human inventiveness, pointing out that nothing in the world could have been made without the human capacity for imagination. Evolutionary anthropologists use the example of tool-making, showing that humans started to develop this brain capacity 50,000 years ago. Scientists can demonstrate that musicians and artists use an unusual amount of imagination for their creativity; and, lastly, the audio tracks 9-11 look at the complex topic of human consciousness. This material forms part of The Open University course DSE212 Exploring Psychology.
In three special editions of Thinking Allowed, Will Self, Joanna Trollope and Iain Sinclair join Laurie Taylor to discuss how imagination and reality combine to create the environments in which we live.
In response to the Reith Lectures on The Emering Mind, by Vilanyanur S Ramachandran (Director of the Centre for Brain and Cognition at the University of California), Dr Peter Naish considers the value of consciousness.