Shankar Vedantam http://wrti.org en Do Orchestras Really Need Conductors? http://wrti.org/post/do-orchestras-really-need-conductors Have you ever wondered whether music conductors actually influence their orchestras?<p>They seem important. After all, they're standing in the middle of the stage and waving their hands. But the musicians all have scores before them that tell them what to play. If you took the conductor away, could the orchestra manage on its own?<p>A new <a href="http://www.plosone.org/article/info%3Adoi%2F10.1371%2Fjournal.pone.0035757">study</a> aims to answer this question. Tue, 27 Nov 2012 19:30:00 +0000 Shankar Vedantam 4790 at http://wrti.org Do Orchestras Really Need Conductors? How Do Racial Attitudes Affect Opinions About The Health Care Overhaul? http://wrti.org/post/how-do-racial-attitudes-affect-opinions-about-health-care-overhaul As the Supreme Court gets ready to hear a case involving the constitutionality of President Obama's health care overhaul, social scientists are asking a disturbing — and controversial — question: Do the intense feelings about the health care overhaul among ordinary Americans stem from their philosophical views about the appropriate role of government, or from their racial attitudes about the signature policy of the country's first black president?<p>In a new <a href="http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1111/j.1540-5907.2011.00577.x/abstract">paper</a> published in the <em>American Journal of Tue, 20 Mar 2012 08:27:00 +0000 Shankar Vedantam 3421 at http://wrti.org How Do Racial Attitudes Affect Opinions About The Health Care Overhaul?