July 23

Going Mental

Tuesday’s Big Idea

Soul-Searching / Unconscious Bias

Soul-Searching, or the "penetrating examination of one's motives, convictions, and attitudes," is quite a grandiose term, and one that we intend to use with some degree of caution.

This term is not part of our normal lexicon at Big Think because it seems to be asking for too much all at once. 

Examining one's own convictions is certainly virtuous, but psychology shows us how easy it is to trick ourselves into believing we've done the job and are deserving of a big pat on the back. It's not an easy task. 

And so we will set out on a more humble-sounding road today, especially since we are examining the highly sensitive issue of race, and look at the ways we can "diminish the role of unconscious bias."

The key word here is diminish. While we cannot fully overcome bias, as Paul Bloom points out in today's lesson, the good news is that we are indeed smart enough to figure out ways to diminish certain unconscious beliefs once we are aware of them. 


  1. 1 How Do We Understand Our Quirky, ...
  2. 2 The Quiet Racism in the Zimmerman...
  3. 3 Cory Booker on Race in America
  4. 4 The Roots of Racism in Rhesus Mon...
   
  1. How Do We Understand Our Quirky, Unconscious Reactions to Trayvon Martin?

    How Do We Understand Our Quirky, Unconscious Reactions to Trayvon Martin?

    We are in need of tools to help us truly examine our own attitudes. 

    Read More…
  2. The Quiet Racism in the Zimmerman Trial

    The Quiet Racism in the Zimmerman Trial

    The legal system is ill equipped to render justice in the tragic death of a young black man.

    Read More…
  3. Cory Booker on Race in America

    Cory Booker on Race in America

    Let's not homogenize a diverse country.

    Read More…
  4. The Roots of Racism in Rhesus Monkeys

    The Roots of Racism in Rhesus Monkeys

    Why our prejudices may be deeply ingrained in our evolutionary development.

    Read More…