How pandemics affect our political brain

Episode 1: How pandemics affect our political brain

Rafael Behr talks to cognitive psychologist Dr Leor Zmigrod about how different personalities react differently in times of national crisis.

Show notes

This week our host Rafael Behr is in conversation with Dr Leor Zmigrod about how cognitive science can help us understand how political identities are formed, and how people's ideological affiliations might affect how they respond to a national crisis.

If you want to delve further into the topic

Reader-friendly essays

Zmigrod, L. (2019). The partisan brain: cognitive study suggests people on the left and right are more similar than they think.

https://theconversation.com/the-partisan-brain-cognitive-study-suggests-people-on-the-left-and-right-are-more-similar-than-they-think-123578

Zmigrod, L. (2018). Brexit: how cognitive psychology helps us make sense of the vote.

https://theconversation.com/brexit-how-cognitive-psychology-helps-us-make-sense-of-the-vote-95031

Relevant academic papers

Zmigrod, L. (2020). The Role of Cognitive Rigidity in Political Ideologies: Theory, Evidence, and Future Directions. Current Opinion in Behavioral Sciences, 34, 34-39.

See paper here.https://doi.org/10.1016/j.cobeha.2019.10.016

Zmigrod, L., Ebert, T., Götz, F. M., & Rentfrow, J. (2020). The Psychological and Socio-political Consequences of Infectious Diseases. Retrieved from psyarxiv.com/84qcm

Tybur, J. M., Inbar, Y., Aarøe, L., Barclay, P., Barlow, F. K., De Barra, M., ... & Consedine, N. S. (2016). Parasite stress and pathogen avoidance relate to distinct dimensions of political ideology across 30 nations. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 113(44), 12408-12413 https://doi.org/10.1073/pnas.1607398113

Murray, D. R., Schaller, M., & Suedfeld, P. (2013). Pathogens and politics: Further evidence that parasite prevalence predicts authoritarianism. PloS One, 8(5). https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0062275

Kim, H. S., Sherman, D. K., & Updegraff, J. A. (2016). Fear of Ebola: The influence of collectivism on xenophobic threat responses. Psychological Science, 27(7), 935-944. https://doi.org/10.1177/0956797616642596

Hosts

Rafael Behr

Rafael Behr

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Philip Berman

Philip Berman

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Guests

Dr Leor Zmigrod

Dr Leor Zmigrod

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