Source: Photo by Travis Langley. San Diego Comic-Con International. Later this year, the Star Wars saga returns to theaters with the first new live action sequel since Return of the Jedi completed the original trilogy in 1983. Luke, Leia, Han, Chewbacca, and the droids C-3PO and R2-D2 return, along with all-new enemies and allies. What is it about these characters and their stories that touched people all across the world? Help us try to figure that out, a little bit of it anyway, by sharing your thoughts on what these characters are like in this survey: An OCEAN Far Away. One of the most robust constructs in personality psychology is the "Big 5" set of personality factors identified by numerous researchers, although perhaps best associated with McCrae and Costa (1987) whose meta-analysis of many studies showed a recurring finding: Five personality factors derived through factor analysis appear in different people across time and throughout various cultures. Traits within … [Read more...] about An OCEAN Far Away: Big 5 Personality Factors in Star Wars
"Shape without form, shade without colour, Paralysed force, gesture without motion;" — T.S. Eliot, The Hollow Men Healthy narcissism is a good thing. A very good thing. People get confused about where to draw the line, though, especially when our ethical standards call upon us to consider the needs of other people above our own. Our need to be ethical, the moral instinct, creates community. Narcissism presumably works when the community shares a healthy sense of self, there is harmony and order, communication and collaboration. That's the ideal, clearly subject to reality. Empathy comes in two flavors: cognitive and emotional. Of course, cognitive and emotional empathy can work together, but they can co-exist separately as well. It turns out that the balance of empathy may be connected with how narcissistic one's personality is. While more narcissistic people can be entertaining and often great fun to spend time with, their inability to pay attention to other people's needs … [Read more...] about Why We Might Feel Lonely Around Narcissism
Harvard psychologist Gordon Allport was the godfather of research on the psychology of prejudice. His 1954 book The Nature of Prejudice is full of many insightful hypotheses about the ways in which we prejudge the members of other groups. One of Allport’s hypotheses was that minorities might displace their own feelings of inferiority onto other minority groups. ‘‘Victims of prejudice may, of course, inflict on others what they themselves receive . . . Pecked at by those higher in the pecking order, one may, like a fowl in the barnyard, peck at those seen as weaker and lower than oneself . . . ” (p. 153). This suggestion is compatible with some other classic work on prejudice, done by Theodor Adorno and his colleagues. In his classic work on the authoritarian personality, Adorno hypothesized that when a person’s self-esteem is threatened by someone from a higher status group, the person is likely … [Read more...] about Who Blasts Minorities When Feeling Bad About Themselves?
War News from Mexico, Richard Caton Woodville (1848) Source: Public domain “Who's the more foolish? The fool or the fool who follows him?” ― Obi Wan Kenobi, Star Wars Rise of the Machines: A 2016 Timeline This summer, the satirical sci-fi TV series Brain Dead portrayed our modern state of highly polarized political discourse as the result of a conspiratorial plot on the part of space alien insects intending a hostile takeover of our planet. The alien bugs, so the story went, were infecting the brains of US Senators, causing them to abandon any spirit of compromise in favor of violent conflict so that we would kill each other off, paving the way for a new world order. We’ve heard about the dangers of using cellphones while driving, making it 23 times more likely to crash your car and resulting in 1.6 million accidents a year. Lately, we’ve been told that the continuous use of mobile devices has resulted in an … [Read more...] about Fake News, Echo Chambers & Filter Bubbles: A Survival Guide
**Spoiler Alert for the TV show! If you are behind on the series, consider this spoiler alert fair warning for what follows! If you’re anything like me, you’re still huddled in a corner somewhere recovering from last week’s episode of Game of Thrones. The show is infamous for ruthlessly killing off its characters, especially the ones you find yourself rooting for. While I don’t spend all my time in life thinking about mental health (really, I don’t!) I sometimes can’t help but wonder about my favorite characters’ mental health issues, lifting diagnoses straight out of the DSM-V, the official mental health handbook for psychiatrists and psychologists and other mental health professionals. Game of Thrones may be a show about war, power and politics in an age of dragons and knights, but it’s impossible to ignore the destructive influence of what can be perceived as severe mental health issues of the characters on their families and on … [Read more...] about Diagnosing Game of Thrones: What’s Ailing Westeros?