COVID19 versus the American Spirit

Watching through my apartment window as my beloved NYC has emptied and dimmed, I’ve had the creeping feeling that the whole city—and with it, the whole country—is running out of air. As if in sympathy with the staggering numbers of critically ill in our overwhelmed and under-equipped ICU’s, the rest of us, too, seem toContinue reading “COVID19 versus the American Spirit”

Self-honesty, pt. 2a: Thinking about COVID19 in a culture that doesn't know how

On this occasion I decided to try my hand at my first-ever tweetstorm, which the Twitter-savvy among you can read and engage with here. For the rest of you (of whom I was recently one, after all), here’s the complete “unrolled” version below: Recently I tweeted this post on the need for “self-honesty” to helpContinue reading “Self-honesty, pt. 2a: Thinking about COVID19 in a culture that doesn't know how”

New publication: A commentary on forgetting

I had a lot of fun co-authoring this newly published article with my former PhD advisor Bethany Teachman. It is a commentary on this article by Fawcett and Hulbert, who argue that forgetting is a “feature” rather than a “bug” of human cognition. We bring evidence from mental health research to bear on some ofContinue reading “New publication: A commentary on forgetting”

Self-honesty, pt. 2: "Prepping" versus pretending to "prep"

Much as I’ve enjoyed being cocooned at home with my newborn and thus largely insulated (for now) from the life-rearranging effects of COVID-19, I can’t avoid discussing it forever. And my last post already made passing reference to the lack of “self-honesty” exhibited by our political leaders, which others have already covered more thoroughly thanContinue reading “Self-honesty, pt. 2: "Prepping" versus pretending to "prep"”

Self-honesty, pt. 1: Knowing versus pretending to know

Those who’ve followed my work over the last couple years know that I’ve been on about “self-honesty” (or “cognitive integrity,” as I’ve termed it in scholarly contexts). Self-deception has received theoretical and empirical attention in the psychology literature; but the field does not have so much as a term to describe the opposite practice: theContinue reading “Self-honesty, pt. 1: Knowing versus pretending to know”

All for Alice, pt. 2 (addendum): Pain made syntonic

In psychology we sometimes make a distinction between “ego-syntonic” and “ego-dystonic” mental states. “Ego-syntonic” states are those we ourselves endorse, those we see as congruent with our identity and values; whereas “ego-dystonic” states are those we disapprove of, those that stand in conflict with the rest of ourselves. This distinction typically gets applied to thoughtsContinue reading “All for Alice, pt. 2 (addendum): Pain made syntonic”