People sometimes explain behavior by appealing to an essentialist concept of the self, often referred to as the true self. Existing studies suggest that people tend to believe that the true self is morally virtuous; that is deep inside, every person is motivated to behave in morally good ways. Is this belief particular to individuals with optimistic beliefs or people from Western cultures, or does it reflect a widely held cognitive bias in how people understand the self? To address this (...) question, we tested the good true self theory against two potential boundary conditions that are known to elicit different beliefs about the self as a whole. Study 1 tested whether individual differences in misanthropy—the tendency to view humans negatively—predict beliefs about the good true self in an American sample. The results indicate a consistent belief in a good true self, even among individuals who have an explicitly pessimistic view of others. Study 2 compared true self-attributions across cultural groups, by comparing samples from an independent country and a diverse set of interdependent countries. Results indicated that the direction and magnitude of the effect are comparable across all groups we tested. The belief in a good true self appears robust across groups varying in cultural orientation or misanthropy, suggesting a consistent psychological tendency to view the true self as morally good. (shrink)
Two decades have passed since the first attempts were made to establish systematic ethical review of human research in the Baltic States. Legally and institutionally much has changed. In this paper we provide an historical and structural overview of ethical review of human research and identify some problems related to the role of ethical review in establishing quality research environment in these countries. Problems connected to (a) public availability of information, (b) management of conflicts of interest, (c) REC composition and (...) motivation of REC members, and (d) differing levels of stringency of ethical review for different types of studies, are identified. Recommendations are made to strengthen cooperation among the Baltic RECs. (shrink)
Central and East Europeans have a great deal in common, both historically and culturally, with West Europeans and North Americans, but tend to be more interdependent. Interdependence has been shown to be linked to holistic cognition. East Asians are more interdependent than Americans and are more holistic. If interdependence causes holism, we would expect Central and East Europeans to be more holistic than West Europeans and North Americans. In two studies we found evidence that Central and East Europeans are indeed (...) more holistic than Westerners on three tasks, one of which examined categorization and two of which measured patterns of visual attention. These studies support the argument that cross-cultural differences in cognition are due to society level differences in independence/interdependence. (shrink)
Humans often behave more prosocially when being observed in person and even in response to subtle eye cues, purportedly to manage their reputation. Previous research on this phenomenon has employed the “watching eyes paradigm,” in which adults displayed greater prosocial behavior in the presence of images of eyes versus inanimate objects. However, the robustness of the effect of eyes on prosocial behavior has recently been called into question. Therefore, the first goal of the present study was to attempt to replicate (...) this effect. Additionally, it remains unclear whether the watching-eyes effect is driven specifically by reputation management or whether any cues indexing human presence more generally also have a similar effect. To address these questions, the current study compared prosocial behavior in the presence of eyes versus inanimate objects as well as other human features. The study was conducted as a field experiment at a children’s museum. Each week, the donation signs were changed to show eyes, noses, mouths, or chairs. Total donation amount and number of patrons per week were recorded. Participants donated more when they were exposed to eyes than to inanimate objects. We thus replicated the previously reported watching-eyes effect. Moreover, more money was donated when individuals were exposed to eyes than to more general cues of human presence. The current findings suggest that eyes play a special role in promoting cooperation in humans, likely by serving as cues of monitoring and thus eliciting reputation management behavior. (shrink)
In Fig. 2 of the aforementioned article the mean value of the “chair” condition is incorrectly displayed as 0.011 when it should be 0.008. All statistics in the text are correct, and the conclusions remain the same.
The author argues that the primary lesson of the so-Called logical and semantical paradoxes is that certain entities do not exist, Entities of which we mistakenly but firmly believe that they must exist. In particular, Russell's paradox teaches us that there is no such thing as the property which every property has if and only if it does not have itself. Why should anyone think that such a property must exist and, Hence, Conceive of russell's argument as a paradox rather (...) than a proof for the nonexistence of this property? the author traces this conviction to an uncritical acceptance of the so-Called principle of property abstraction and claims that this principle is false. It is simply not true, As one widely assumes, That propositional forms represent (complex) properties. Then it is argued, On independent grounds, That there are no complex properties, But only complex states of affairs. (shrink)