Article

Self-Deception

Harry Triandis

in Psychology

ISBN: 9780199828340
Published online November 2011 | | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/obo/9780199828340-0067
Self-Deception

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  • Psychology
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Self-deception is seeing the world the way we wish it to be rather than the way it is. When people have a self-deception, they use their hopes, needs, desires, theory, ideology, prejudices, expectations, memories, and other psychological elements to construct the way they see the world. Furthermore, as humans sample information from their environment they tend to sample more heavily the positive rather than the negative elements and the elements that are consistent with their ideology, theory, or religion rather than the elements that are inconsistent. Self-deceptions are usually individual, but when they are widely shared in a culture they are cultural. For example, humans in most cultures believed that spirits and supernatural beings make the world work. However, after around 585 bce (see Religion) some humans began to believe that the way the world works can be explained by natural factors—that is, by astronomy or physics. In another example, in many cultures most people believe that their culture is the best in the world; in fact the name they use for their own culture is often the same word used for “humans.” In short, whoever is not “us” is not human.

Article.  9814 words. 

Subjects: Psychology ; Cognitive Psychology ; Developmental Psychology ; Health Psychology ; History and Systems in Psychology ; Educational Psychology ; Social Psychology

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