The Science of Why We Don’t Believe Science

In other words, when we think we’re reasoning, we may instead be rationalizing. Or to use an analogy offered by University of Virginia psychologist Jonathan Haidt: We may think we’re being scientists, but we’re actually being lawyers (PDF). Our „reasoning“ is a means to a predetermined end—winning our „case“—and is shot through with biases. They include „confirmation bias,“ in which we give greater heed to evidence and arguments that bolster our beliefs, and „disconfirmation bias,“ in which we expend disproportionate energy trying to debunk or refute views and arguments that we find uncongenial.

Lengthy but very good piece on why and how we react to information differing from our opinions. Cut short: The more smart we are, the less intelligent we react. Bugger.

19. April 2011 von Axel
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