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Why Does History Repeat Itself?

Teenagers are known for ignoring their parents’ advice, but is this reputation for rebellion well-founded? And is rejecting our elders’ advice part of what it means to be human?

Teenagers are known for ignoring their parents’ advice, but is this reputation for rebellion well-founded? If so, is rejecting the advice of previous generations and treading our own path an important part of what it means to be human? Are we successful as a species precisely because of our questioning natures?

Listener Hans started pondering these questions after his own adolescent children repeatedly ignored his nagging. Many animals simply follow in their parents’ footsteps – so what makes human children different?

Marnie Chesterton and a panel of experts look at the science of taking advice and making decisions, finding out how human curiosity and exploration compare to other animals, learning the best ways to give and take advice, and seeing whether we’re more likely to trust artificial intelligence than the wisdom of our elders. Finally, we give listener Hans some expert advice on whether or not to keep nagging his kids.

Presenter: Marnie Chesterton
Producer: Cathy Edwards

(Image: A father and son having communication issues. Credit: Getty Images)

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27 minutes

Last on

Mon 30 Jul 2018 14:32GMT

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