Why We Prefer Good Stories Over Truth
Humans do not passively receive the world, we interpret it and retell it to our friends and neighbors. Recent research suggests we are quite eager to bend the truth for a good story.
What's the Latest Development?
While human memory stores past experiences, it functions much more dynamically than our technological devices—voice recorders, video cameras, etc.—which are tasked with doing the same. We often remember events differently from how they happened and recent research suggests we are more likely to misremember when there is societal pressure to do so. One study found that individuals were more willing to accept the way a group of people recollected an event than they were to trust their own memory.
What's the Big Idea?
In the experiment, individuals compared their memory of an event with the group's memory, not knowing that researchers were presenting them with deliberately false recollections. They deferred to the group's made up version of events but even when researchers came clean, telling the subjects they had been given intentionally falsified memories, the individuals still claimed to remember the event according to the false recollections they were fed. Researchers speculate that there may be a social function behind our faulty memories.
- The meaning of the word 'confidence' seems obvious. But it's not the same as self-esteem.
- Confidence isn't just a feeling on your inside. It comes from taking action in the world.
- Join Big Think Edge today and learn how to achieve more confidence when and where it really matters.
- There are 2 different approaches to governing free speech on college campuses.
- One is a morality/order approach. The other is a bottom-up approach.
Two new studies say yes. Unfortunately, each claims a different time.
- Both studies involved mice on treadmills and measured different markers to produce their results.
- Economist Sylvia Ann Hewlett breaks down what qualities will inspire others to believe in you.
- Here's how 300 leaders and 4,000 mid-level managers described someone with executive presence.
- Get more deep insights like these to power your career forward. Join Big Think Edge.
SMARTER FASTER trademarks owned by The Big Think, Inc. All rights reserved.