Scienceblind: Why Our Intuitive Theories about the World Are So Often Wrong (Hardcover)
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"A fascinating, empathetic book"-Wall Street Journal
Humans are born to create theories about the world--unfortunately, they're usually wrong, and keep us from understanding the world as it really is.
Why do we catch colds? What causes seasons to change? And if you fire a bullet from a gun and drop one from your hand, which bullet hits the ground first? In a pinch we almost always get these questions wrong. Worse, we regularly misconstrue fundamental qualities of the world around us. In Scienceblind, cognitive and developmental psychologist Andrew Shtulman shows that the root of our misconceptions lies in the theories about the world we develop as children. They're not only wrong, they close our minds to ideas inconsistent with them, making us unable to learn science later in life. So how do we get the world right? We must dismantle our intuitive theories and rebuild our knowledge from its foundations. The reward won't just be a truer picture of the world, but clearer solutions to many controversies-around vaccines, climate change, or evolution-that plague our politics today.
About the Author
Andrew Shtulman is an associate professor of psychology and cognitive science at Occidental, where he directs the Thinking Lab. He holds degrees in psychology from Princeton and Harvard and has published several dozen scholarly articles on conceptual development and conceptual change. His work has been featured in Scientific American, CBS News, and the New Yorker. He lives in Pasadena, California.