Are you Team Yanny or Team Laurel? That question took over the InterWebs last week as a grainy recording of a thrice-repeated word demanded us to choose sides according to what our ears heard. And true to our nature, whichever word we heard became the only real and rational response, pushing us to indignant frustration by those who heard the other. Whichever name you heard, this emotionally charged debate sounds a lot like other disagreements common today. Our ears hear one thing, and we cannot imagine why others hear something else. This dissonance is frustrating, and the emotions this stirs up causes a similar response to the Yanny/Laurel debate: We choose sides, dig in, and roll our proverbial eyes at those who think differently.

In this episode of Persuasion, Erin Straza and Hannah Anderson summarize the Yanny/Laurel debate and the reactions it produced, and then they dissect how this frivolous debate mirrors the debates we have about issues of much greater import. Considering the scientific proof provided for why some ears hear Laurel and others hear Yanny, what other debates could be diffused if we understand the factors that tune a person’s ear—and heart—in ways that differ from our own? Listen in to all this and more, and then continue the conversation on Twitter @PersuasionCAPC or in the CAPC members-only community on Facebook. And what did you hear: Yanny or Laurel?

More from Episode 136: 

Yanny or Laurel? How a Sound Clip Divided AmericaNYTimes

Why you hear “Laurel” or “Yanny” in that viral audio clip, explainedVox

Did you enjoy this episode of Persuasion? Give these a listen:

Persuasion 129: Get off My Proverbial Lawn

Persuasion 122: Things We Didn’t Say in 2017

Persuasion 114: Pie Is the New Cupcake

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