Matthew Cohen, MSW

Matthew Cohen, MSW

Social Justice Solutions | Staff Writer
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Westerner’s Deemed “Weird” By Study

Ethan Water, of PC Mag, explores a psychological study done that compares Western and non-Western behavioral tendencies. The study, conducted by Joe Henrich of UCLA, used a variation on the Prisoner game to assess the underlying differences in how the vastly different traditions perceive reality.

““The Weirdest People in the World?” (pdf) By “weird” they meant both unusual and Western, Educated, Industrialized, Rich, and Democratic. It is not just our Western habits and cultural preferences that are different from the rest of the world, it appears. The very way we think about ourselves and others—and even the way we perceive reality—makes us distinct from other humans on the planet, not to mention from the vast majority of our ancestors.”

Not surprisingly, the study was met by resistance from established, and curiously Western, anthropologists.

“Given the data, they concluded that social scientists could not possibly have picked a worse population from which to draw broad generalizations.”

So much for Western exceptionalism. I suspect, but in truth I always do, that materialism is perverting the Western mind into a very delusional space; a place where humans magically control reality, and happiness comes not from understanding this world, but dominating it.

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