Dina Temple-Raston on how the teenage brain is susceptible to poor decision-making.

Teens Don’t Join ISIS Because of Religion. They Do It Because of Their Brains.

Teens Don’t Join ISIS Because of Religion. They Do It Because of Their Brains.

A daily news and culture podcast with Mike Pesca.
Jan. 12 2018 8:07 PM

Teenage Brains Are Just Different

We’re still learning about how the mind of an adolescent is only half-baked.

Dina Temple-Raston hosts the Audible Original series “What Were You Thinking?”


Listen to Episode 908 of Slate’s The Gist:


On The Gist, Mike examines Trump’s bottom-of-the-barrel statements on immigration.

In the interview, Dina Temple-Raston explains how she became fascinated by the teenage brain. After years of covering terrorism for NPR, she was stunned to see so many young people leaving their homes to join ISIS. Teenagers aren’t just prone to falling in with terrorist recruiters: Their underdeveloped minds make them more susceptible to video gaming compulsions and violent behavior. Why? Temple-Raston finds answers in her Audible Original series, “What Were You Thinking?

In the Spiel, a skit about the science (and lopsided sex ratio) of turtle love.

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Mike Pesca is the host of the Slate daily podcast The Gist. He also contributes reports and commentary to NPR.