06th - 11th October 2016
bande annonce

Trapped Like Rats?

Friday 08th October 2010 from 16h00 to 17h30
Salle 1 / Auditorium

Directed by
Philippe Thomine
Written by
Didier Desor
Produced by
Videoscop Université Nancy 2

Documentary, France, 2009, 52 min

Competition Grand jury

The film focuses on a series of experiments conducted by Didier Desor, lecturer and researcher at Nancy-Université.

Groups of six rats have to dive and swim underwater to get some food. A role distrubution - remarkably constant from one group to another - appears: certain rats are brave enough to undergo the stressful ordeal of swimming underwater to bring back the food, whereas others never dive but steal the food from the swimmers on their return.

This fascinating experiment gives rise to a certain amount of fantasy with its obvious throw backs to human behaviour and can be easily (and often wrongly) interpreted in psychological, political or ideological terms. A major part of the film is thus devoted to this interpretation, developed in several stages just like the experiment itself.

Ultimately, the most immediate interpretation – that of competition – is called into question by another point of view, linked to the idea of cooperation.


Debate with :

  • Philippe Thomine, director
  • Didier Desor, professor of Behavioral Neuroscience, Nancy 2 University
  • Jacqueline Ries, producer

Know more

  • Website dédicated to this experiment (in french).