Image: “The Cocktail Party” Via: Alex Katz
There is always a confused clatter of sounds at a noisy party, but we can still hear our name if it is mentioned on the other side of the room.
This ability is known as the cocktail-party effect. But it is not really our name we hear—only the sound. The ear transmits whatever sounds it hears to the brain, which then interprets them. Because of the familiarity of our name, we are instructed by the selective mechanism of the brain that we have heard it spoken above other noises.