是否了解社会心理学让你更自由?

是否认识社会心理学让你更自由?

偏置靠在政治保守派社会心理学领域? 已经有一个,因为这个问题激烈辩论 非正式调查 超过1,000与会者在2011一个社会心理学会议上透露该组将 压倒性的自由主义.

正式调查已经 类似的结果,显示自由主义者对心理学的更广阔的领域保守派的比例是14到1。

从那以后,社会心理学家试图弄清楚为什么这种不平衡的存在。

所提供的主要的解释是,该领域具有anticonservative偏压。 我毫不怀疑,这 存在偏差,但它没有强大到足以推谁在他们似乎离开率瘦保守出了场的人。

我相信,一个不太起眼的解释是更加引人注目:学习社会心理学可以让你更自由。 我知道这种可能性,因为这正是发生在我身上。

“智人Libertus'成为社会心理学家

我曾经是自由主义者。 我认为,保护个人自由是法律的最高宗旨,政府应在塑造人们的行为没有任何作用。 这些观点倾向于共和党的立场上多如枪支管制,环境政策和戒毒治疗问题,民主党的人保持一致。

我认为,人们应该有充分的机会来做出自己的选择,并应承担的这些选择的后果承担全部责任。

自由主义世界观假设我们每个人都是一个 同质libertus,这与它的饱满的精神能力的行为的时候,通过每一个决定其个人的价值观和幸福完整的意义而言推理的生物。

一个完美的自由意志的社会不需要法律来保护环境,例如,因为每个 同质libertus 将考虑在每个他或她做这个决定对环境的影响。 社会对环境的关怀会自动在其公民的选择中得到反映。

一个社会心理学上最强大的见解是,人类是不是 同质利贝蒂。 对自己这样的想法是诱人的,也是错误的。 我们不是激进的个人; 我们是 社会的动物。 我们不逻辑思维在任何时候; 我们采取 快捷键。 我们并不总是 考虑未来。 甚至当我们这样做,我们是 由本发明的上下文偏压.

学习社会心理学,关于人们如何实际做出重要的选择,让我意识到社会中所扮演,通过法律等手段的重要作用,在使我们能够实现我们的价值和理想。 认识到这一点把我推到决然更自由,比我以前。

这并不是说学习心理学让我心脏出血,但学习心理学给了我更好地理解人们为什么他们做什么。 尤其是三个主题,塑造了我的政治观的演变从自由主义的自由主义:枪支管制,慈善事业和自我控制。

有很多人,但是这三个最淋漓尽致地展现在缺陷 同质libertus 假设。

案例研究#1:枪支管制

学习社会心理学首先改变有关枪支管制我的看法。 Homo libertus would follow first principles when deciding to use force: only out of self-defense, and only when there is a real threat of harm.

But we now know that people’s perceptions of threat are a blend of objective reality and subjective interpretation. The experience of threat is informed by our snap judgments of the situation and our preconceptions about the potential attacker.

For instance, people are more likely to shoot an unarmed black man than an unarmed white man. This is true of just about everyone, including 非裔美国人, highly trained 警务人员, and people who are horrified at the thought of having a racial bias and motivated to be egalitarian. Also, the mere presence of a gun primes people for aggression, making violence more likely even when there is no rational basis for it.

Implicit biases, including ones that go against our overt beliefs, can sneak into life-and-death decisions. This knowledge convinced me that giving even the most well-intentioned people total liberty with guns leads to outcomes that violate equality and justice.

Case Study #2: Charity

Decisions about charitable giving are another example. Government aid to foreign countries is unnecessary, I used to think, because if people care about what happens outside the US, then they’ll give money directly to those in need.

It turns out that we humans often have noble, charitable intentions, but we behave in strange and irrational ways when it comes to actual giving.

For example, people give more money to save the life of one person who is vividly portrayed than to save hundreds of people who are depicted as statistics, a phenomenon known as the identifiable victim effect.

Even when victims are equally identifiable, we tend to give less money when there are more of them. If a 同质libertus cared enough to donate $X to one person, then he would donate at least that much to two people. The fact that real humans act in the opposite way made me realize that formalizing our support for those in need through foreign aid and similar policies is a logical way for people in our society to ensure that we act on our charitable intentions.

Case Study #3: Self-control And Bad Behavior

A final example of how social psychology made me more liberal comes from my own research on self-control.

The libertarian view places the responsibility for choices and their consequences entirely on the individual. We have the right to engage in unhealthy behaviors such as cigarette-smoking or excessive eating, and the downstream problems arising from those behaviors are ours alone.

However, unlike 同质libertus, many factors outside of our control interfere with our ability to quit smoking or eat healthfully. Simply being poor reduces self-control. Being abused or neglected as a child reduces self-controlincreases the risk of substance use as an adult. In a perfect world, we would all have sufficient self-control to align our intentions neatly with our actions.

But in this world, where we do not, the fact that some people are saddled with deficits whose seeds were sown before birth undermines the libertarian assumption that people are capable, autonomous decision-makers.

These are just three examples, but I think they illustrate well the ways that the idealized folk psychology that underpinned my libertarian politics collapsed in the face of social psychological evidence.

You might think this means I think people aren’t responsible for their behavior, but actually I just think that we have a different kind of responsibility. The fact that we’re not always in total control of our immediate actions means that we have even greater responsibility to construct our situations and our institutions in alignment with our deep values.

As I continue to study social psychology, I increasingly believe in the importance of policies that recognize and accommodate the realities of human psychology, which necessarily insert certain roles for government in our everyday lives. And I bet I’m not the only one.

关于作者谈话

berkman elliotElliot Berkman is Assistant Professor, Psychology at University of Oregon. Examples of his research include fMRI studies of basic goal-relevant processes such as self-regulation and inhibitory control, experimental studies on how approach and avoidance motivation relate to emotions and performance, and longitudinal studies on real-world goals such as smoking cessation and dieting.

本文最初发表于 谈话。 阅读 原创文章.

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