Psychology

You want to know what movies are about - and that is why spoilers related to the upcoming "Star Wars" movie and "Avengers 2" and whatever else are so popular.

Hey, you knew how the RMS Titanic met its demise, and you still watched a movie about it, notes Rich Goldstein in The Daily Beast.  I didn't, but most of you did. And Shakespeare knew you wanted to know, that is why you read The Tragedy of Romeo and Juliet and not The Mystery Of Romeo and Juliet.

I know how The Grapes of Wrath is going to end, I still read it over and over again.

Gary Larson tapped into the universal absurd. Charles Schulz helped us identify with the underdog in us all. And Bill Watterson accurately represented a father’s profound and boundless knowledge of the universe, as in Calvin’s dad’s explanation that ice floats because, “It’s cold. Ice wants to get warm, so it goes to the top of liquids in order to be nearer the sun.” Or his explanation of relativity: “It’s because you keep changing time zones. See, if you fly to California you gain three hours on a five-hour flight, right?”

Bosses who are most conscientious about the fairness of workplace decisions make their workers happier and their companies more productive, but they may be burning themselves out.

A new paper found the act of carefully monitoring the fairness of workplace decisions wears down supervisors mentally and emotionally.  The researchers surveyed 82 bosses twice a day for a few weeks. Managers who reported mental fatigue from situations involving procedural fairness were less cooperative and socially engaging with other workers the next day. 


A new psychology paper research finds that adolescent females who are either obese or depressed are more likely to develop the other.

By assessing a statewide sample of more than 1,500 males and females in Minnesota over a period of more than 10 years, the authors found that depression occurring by early adolescence in females predicts obesity by late adolescence. Meanwhile, obesity that occurs by late adolescence in females predicts the onset of depression by early adulthood. No significant associations between the two disorders across time were found in males during the study.


In the 2012 election campaign, Mitt Romney was vilified for saying something everyone knew to be true and extrapolating motivation from it - that each party was going to get 47 percent of the vote no matter what and that dictated economic policy. Only 3 percent of the people on each side were really up for grabs, everyone else was voting for a ticket no matter who was on it.


This week, the people of Crimea overwhelmingly voted to join Russia. They were jubilant, the Russian people were prideful, and Europe and the United States acted like it was the start of a World War. President Obama levied sanctions on President Vladimir Putin's friends, leading the Russian Deputy Prime Minster to ask if it was some sort of joke.

Trust is an essential basis for business relationships but it can be easily shaken if one business partner exhibits dishonest behavior.  And so a subconscious strategy to help avoid the negative emotions associated with any breaches of trust may cause some to prefer computers over people, according to a new paper.

When individuals engage in risky business transactions with each other, they may end up being disappointed and so they'd rather leave money decisions to a computer, says Prof. Dr. Bernd Weber from the Center for Economics and Neuroscience (CENs) at the University of Bonn. "As a result, people are not all that eager to put their trust in others." 


I would like for my son, Leif, to play the violin. I’m a serious ex music geek and so in addition to pegging me as an abhorrent tiger parent intent on thrusting my offspring into the one-percent where they can be hedge fund managers and own things like furniture coasters, I also happen to think that music is an enriching skill that adds depth to a life well lived.

That’s beside the point.

We all feel stressed but a new paper finds that how we deal with it is different - even in as broad a category as men and women. Stressed women apparently become more "prosocial". 


When are members of opposing political parties not simply stupid, uninformed, inhuman hordes lacking in ethics and compassion, or incompetent?

When they are in charge. Then they can be creators of a vast conspiracy whose manipulative efforts are everywhere.

How can someone be both mindless and a threat? In the world of social psychology, where weak observational studies rule the land.