Chickens are currently playing an important role in research in the United States into the causes of catatonic schizophrenia in humans.
GV Psychologist snapping chicken out of trance.
SV Laboratory assistant attempting eye contract.
CU PAN ACROSS Erect chicken legs.
GV & CU Stuffed chicken-hawk shown to chicken. (3 shots)
"Tulane University Psychology Lab. looks a bit like a poultry farm these days...since Dr. Gordon Gallup has undertaken a research project which begins with proving that chickens are really "chicken". The chicken is put into a sort of hypnotic trance -- which Gallup calls "tonic immobility". For the chicken it's simply a matter of holding him down for a moment and establishing eye contact. Instinct tells the chicken that predators seldom go for dead prey...so the chicken plays possum. It's a phenomenon, Gallup says, common to all animals... and he says his research could provide a model for studying human catatonia -- a trance-like state induced by the inability to cope with emotional stress."
"Gallup says the research project has already produced positive indications of one day helping schizophrenics control catatonia...and perhaps even avoid the catatonic state altogether. Gallup's poultry helps with fear which knows no bounds...succumbing even to a stuffed chicken-hawk...which, let's face it, is operating these days on reputation alone. This is Bob Creiger in New Orleans."
Initials VS 7.50 VS 8.00
REPORTER: BOB CREIGER
This film is serviced with a commentary by Television News Incorporated reporter Bob Creiger.
Script is copyright Reuters Limited. All rights reserved
Background: Chickens are currently playing an important role in research in the United States into the causes of catatonic schizophrenia in humans. Psychologist, Dr. Gordon Gallup of Tulane University, New Orleans, is using poultry in his study of human catatonia -- a trance-like state induced by the inability to cope with emotional stress.
The chickens are put into a sort of hypnotic trance using direct eye contract. Dr. Gallup calls this state "tonic immobility" which he says is a phenomenon common to all animals in the presence of predators.
Just as the chicken instinctively plays "dead" when in direct confrontation with danger, Dr. Gallup fools that under conditions of exaggerated stores, human beings resort to a catatonic state in the hope of escape.
The experiments have already produced positive results, according to Dr. Gallup. He hopes that his research will one day help schizophrenics control -- and possibly avoid -- catatonia altogether.