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How Lobotomies Work

RELEASED May 19, 2009
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Episode Summary
Lobotomies -- brain surgeries to relieve psychiatric problems -- are rarely performed today, but they were once fairly common. Tune in to learn more about the controversial history and practice of lobotomies in this podcast from HowStuffWorks.com.

Announcer

Welcome to Stuff You Should Know from howstuffworks.com. This podcast is brought to you by audible.com, the internet's leading provider of Spoken Word Entertainment. Get a free audio book download of your choice when you sign up today. Log on to audiblepodcast.com/stuff today for details.

Josh Clark

Hey. And welcome to the podcast. It's called Stuff You Should Know. It's Josh and Chuck [inaudible] in Long Beach together. Now you know you're in trouble. What's up, Chuck?

Chuck Bryant

How long have you been sitting on that one for the week? That's good.

Josh Clark

Thanks. Thank you, Chuck. How you doing?

Chuck Bryant

I'm well, sir. You?

Josh Clark

Pretty good. I'm feeling great, actually, Chuck. I am glad to be alive. Yeah. So, Chuck?

Chuck Bryant

Yes?

Josh Clark

I think this could arguably pan out to be our greatest podcast ever.

Chuck Bryant

You just jinxed us.

Josh Clark

No. I really don't think so. Chuck did the cheek thing twice before this one.

Chuck Bryant

True.

Josh Clark

He was kind enough to do it a second time, and I don't think we've ever had a topic that Chuck and I were more intensely interested in than this one.

Chuck Bryant

I know. It kinda just came out of nowhere, and it's really - well, not out of nowhere because it's historical, but in our eyes out of nowhere.

Josh Clark

Which if you -

Chuck Bryant

Funny I say in our eyes.

Josh Clark

Yeah. Little fore shadowing from Charles Bryant!

Chuck Bryant

Yes.

Josh Clark

Nice one, Chuck. If you will get off of LOL Cats for a second and go check your iTunes, you'll find that the title of this one is How Lobotomies Work.

Chuck Bryant

Yes.

Josh Clark

And that's what we're gonna be talking about are lobotomies.

Chuck Bryant

So fascinating.

Josh Clark

It really is. Lobotomies kind of exist in this little segment of 20th century culture, medical madness, I guess you could say. Right?

Chuck Bryant

Right. And pop culture because you still hear it being thrown around, like, boy, somebody lobotomize me. Scramble my brain, but it's kind of exactly the way it happened.

Josh Clark

Yeah. Yeah. So Chuck, you're a lover of great cinema. Right?

Chuck Bryant

Of course.

Josh Clark

Of course, you've seen One Flew over the Coo Coo's Nest. Right?

Chuck Bryant

I have a poster.

Josh Clark

You do?

Chuck Bryant

Yeah, a good one.

Josh Clark

Yeah. The one of Jack Nichols, him laughing with the watch cap on!

Chuck Bryant

Uh-huh.

Josh Clark

Yeah, that's a good one. So of course, you remember the - the pivotal scene of the movie where McMurphy is lobotomized for being unruly. He tries to kill Nurse Hatchet because -

Chuck Bryant

Awful. Nurse Ratchet.

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