British illusionist’s ‘hypnotizing gays’ comment is greatly exaggerated


A UK hypnotist has rejected reports that he plans to temporarily turn straight participants gay on an upcoming TV series.

Illusionist Derren Brown has made a name with viewers of his television shows for attempting daring stunts. Several UK newspapers reported Sunday that his latest one will aim to briefly make a heterosexual volunteer be interested in the same sex and vice versa.

Brown has encountered no shortage of controversy in the past for his tricks, including having a person believe that the world had been taken over by zombies. However, on this occasion, Brown sought to clarify his remarks on Twitter.

“[It’s] Odd, seeing as in the original GT article I said that changing sexuality WOULDN’T work” he commented on the social networking site.

Brown publicly came out as gay himself in 2007. The Sun newspaper had published an excerpt from his interview with the Gay Times.

“I was thinking about this the other day – it would be interesting wouldn’t it? To take a gay guy and make him straight and a straight guy and make him gay,” Brown said.

However, the hypnotist followed this up by explaining that this wouldn’t be possible in a true sense.

“I think you’d only be able to achieve a kind of effect for a short period of time, but it would probably be more about role playing, not advertently in a sexual sense but I’m not really sure how long it would last for,” he added.

John Kihlstrom, a psychology professor at the University of California Berkeley who specializes in the study of the Brain and Behavior, echoes Brown’s sense that this form of hypnosis would not work based on comparable research previously conducted.

“There is research on hypnotically suggested sex change, which isn’t the same thing. But it’s along the same lines. The researchers are very clear that they’re studying delusion” he told 429Magazine. 

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