For questions about the empirical and theoretical study of how perception, feelings, behavior, and cognition are affected by the actual, imagined, or implied presence of others. Questions are addressed both from the individual perspective (American school) and group perspective (European school).

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4
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1answer
174 views

Physiological differences between brains of Conservatives and Liberals

I work for a non-profit research organization and I have been assigned to do research on this topic. I have been doing my best to find studies on this topic but every website and article seems to ...
4
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3answers
566 views

Is it possible for non-BDSM relationships to learn anything from slave-master relationships?

I am interested in research on slave-master relationships within the BDSM spectrum. This questions concerns people who do not just engage in BDSM recreationally, but rater define their relationship ...
4
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2answers
131 views

What is the causal relationship between extreme jealousy and poor mental health?

Jealousy can be a powerful and destructive force. It can take over reason. Can severe to extreme jealousy precipitate or contribute to poor mental health, at the extreme, psychosis. Or, is it poor ...
4
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2answers
222 views

Is autodidactism a feature that can only be possessed by special kinds of individuals?

I am from Brazil – at the current moment, education in this country is undoubtedly poor. I've been learning some things over the years on my own, mostly downloading content from the internet and ...
4
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2answers
176 views

What is the primary mechanism behind nationalism, sports-team-ism, product-ism etc.?

I'm interested in doing research on the subject of nationalism, but I believe that what I'm looking for is more generic than that. I observe that nationalism looks similar to the way that people feel ...
4
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1answer
313 views

Can one “understand” emotions, yet not “feel” them?

Prometheus Viral Clip #3 - David is a good clip of a fictional character in a science-fiction movie that helps frame my question; but I am interested in the general question, not the specifics of this ...
4
votes
1answer
109 views

What is the term for judging based on a simulation of the same parameters on oneself

Allow me to outline the observed process and three hypothetical examples below. For the sake of keeping the samples simple, I will ignore prior moral or religious convictions that a regular person ...
4
votes
2answers
153 views

How can the mind be trained to accept ongoing mental or emotional suffering?

We have physical, emotional and mental needs and wants; some tangible, some intangible. In the case where we know that some of our needs and/or wants are not going to be met; how can the mind be ...
4
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1answer
154 views

How does emotional pain cause as much suffering as physical pain?

Consider someone who has a serious injury. Example examples include losing a limb, being shot or falling from a great height. It is easy for the human mind and science to comprehend and explain why ...
4
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1answer
64 views

Are there any applications of choice modelling to romantic relationships?

Background: I was at a talk today where the presenter discussed a study that involved a administering a couple of questions asking participants which of two people they would prefer as a relationship ...
4
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2answers
109 views

Difficulty of having profound scientific discussions with more than 2 or 3 people?

I am a physicist and the other day, a friend of mine pointed out something that I had never noted explicitly before. This is an empirical observation, but it seems true to me, and it may raise a lot ...
4
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1answer
62 views

Is there a variance in acceptance of conspiracy theories by occupation?

For some time I have been very interested in the intelligent design (ID)/creationism vs. evolution debate. My parents are both medical professionals and consider themselves creationists. I have many ...
4
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2answers
220 views

Defining shyness towards strangers in confrontational situations

First of all, I would like to stress that I am not a cogsci person and I have almost no background in those areas of science. The question is whether there exists a definition of a phenomenon I ...
4
votes
1answer
186 views

How effective are pharmaceutical or therapeutic treatments for jealousy?

This is the last of a series of questions I've posted about jealousy (see here, here, and here). What pharmaceutical and therapeutic treatments, if any, have been developed for managing acute ...
4
votes
1answer
77 views

The psychology of humility. Why do we not value our efforts?

This question has crossed my mind a few times, and quite recently on reflection it came up again. Why is it that we rarely value the worth of our efforts? By this I mean, why do people often have ...
4
votes
1answer
2k views

What are the psychological mechanisms behind arrogance?

According to this Wiktionary defintion, arrogance is 1.The act or habit of arrogating, or making undue claims in an overbearing manner; that species of pride which consists in exorbitant claims ...
4
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1answer
317 views

Difference between “Social Roles” and “Social Groups”

The two terms "Social Roles" and "Social Groups" sound similar and I don't know if these terms are often just used interchangeably. Is there a specific difference between "Social Roles" and "Social ...
4
votes
1answer
88 views

Criterion for Asperger's Syndrome

I realize that the diagnostic criteria for Asperger's Syndrome (AS) have changed with the latest version of the DSM, but there was a criterion in the DSM-IV for AS that I didn't understand: "marked ...
4
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1answer
134 views

What causes some women to have repeated abortions?

Fisher et al. (2005) studied the characteristics of women who have repeated abortions. The study was conducted in countries where reliable contraception and education about birth control are readily ...
4
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1answer
159 views

Is there a psychological explanation for people being 'overcome by the Holy Spirit'?

I am a scientist by nature, and I don't believe at all in God or any form of spirituality or the Holy Spirit (of course). However, it does confuse me as to how some people genuinely do seem to be ...
4
votes
1answer
72 views

Phenomenon causing people to change their opinion when they are asked to hypothetically defend an opposing viewpoint?

I remember reading a case study on this years ago and I am trying to track it down. The study involved asking people who held strong opinions on varied subjects to defend the opposite opinion in a ...
4
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1answer
51 views

Efficiency drop when joining and splitting teams

What will happen when a team is either split or joined with another team? After reading about Tuckman's stages of group development, I understand that the new team will probably start at the beginning ...
4
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1answer
92 views

What makes some criminals glamorous to others?

Some murderers are glamorized by society while others labeled monsters. In both cases, they can commit the same terrible crimes and cause the same amounts of pain - yet one can be romanticized the ...
4
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1answer
247 views

Is StackExchange.com Addiction Dangerous?

I recently looked at the meta.math.stackexchange.com and found the second anniversary was celebrated. As in the last year's Happy-Birthday post (linked therein) , some people declared the addiction to ...
4
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0answers
68 views

Body Language: Why do we give each other the grumpy/frowning fake smile?

I've recently become aware of this - I kinda knew I was always doing it, but just now it got me self conscious and thinking about it: When crossing paths with a stranger, you are supposed to be ...
4
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0answers
57 views

Theoretical grounding for Agile/Scrum methodologies in software development

Agile and Scrum methodologies are well known and often studied and written about in software development. But these methodologies are about managing the activities and the workplace itself. Are there ...
4
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0answers
273 views

Is being naked good for you? [closed]

What are the psychological effects and correlates of social nudism? No opinions, only research, please.
4
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1answer
392 views

What traits does a man have, when he is apt to feeling threatened by strong women?

This isn't intended as a gender biased question, as both men and women can have strange hang ups when it comes to either sex. I am curious about men who are threatened by strong women. By strong ...
4
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0answers
73 views

Can asking a leading question in a poll change the opinion of the respondent?

Poll* questions if phrased in a way to suggest a fact to the reader, may force the person to think of explanations to support the view expressed in the question. This belief may then last on its own ...
4
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0answers
70 views

What is the psychology behind the need to be the centre of attention?

In conversations, there are often times when a member of the group will consistently divert the conversation back to their own topic (often to do with them). A 'pseudo-conversation' example: ...
4
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0answers
48 views

How can I prime aversion to conflict?

I'm looking for a way to prime subjects in an experiment to dislike exposure to conflict (arguments, anger between people, incivility, etc.). Does anyone know of a good method for this?
4
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0answers
356 views

Overcoming the effect of Limerence? [closed]

I recently came to know about Limerence. I could not find definite answers for the following questions: It has been said that limerence generally lasts between 18 months to 3 years, could be more ...
3
votes
2answers
79 views

Why is “breaking a car” considered a sort of therapy?

I've heard this several times. People breaks things to feel more relaxed, less depressed or is there some other reason? What do you call this effect?
3
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2answers
203 views

At what point do multiple personas for social context cross into multiple personalities disorder?

Recently I took part in a conversation about the difference between the "many hats" of a successful corporate executive, and "multiple personality disorder." Although humorously bantered, the ideas ...
3
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2answers
56 views

Are hot-streaks in athletics real, and if so, is there a known psychological basis?

It is common to refer to an athlete who is enjoying a sustained period of success (e.g. a long consecutive game hitting streak in baseball) as being "hot", suggesting that something about their ...
3
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3answers
136 views

What is a scientifically plausible method by which people might in the future be able to read minds? [closed]

I am writing a book. It will be post-apocalyptic, and the apocalypse I'm thinking of will involve people being able to read each other's mind. Can any of you give me a slightly plausible reason that ...
3
votes
2answers
90 views

Are perceptions of beauty and the ideal partner mostly determined by mass media?

Mass-media marketing seems to strongly influence people's beliefs. Are perceptions of beauty and the ideal partner mostly determined by what mass media proposes?
3
votes
1answer
141 views

Does reading a book out loud make you better in social situations?

Suppose a person reads a book out loud for 1 hour straight. Would this "exercise" the parts of the brain involved in speech? Would this make the person a better communicator in social situations?
3
votes
1answer
106 views

What is relationship between being a good person and functioning in society?

The phrases "No more Mr Nice guy" and "Nice guys finish last" imply that being a good person can sometimes be detrimental to your well-being. In corrupt societies being fair and good might be ...
3
votes
2answers
507 views

What is the psychological basis of “survivor's guilt”?

Context I have just been watching a documentary about survivors of the Japanese earthquake and tsunami of March 2011. Specifically the interviews with ordinary residents of the towns affected. One ...
3
votes
2answers
325 views

What is the neurological basis for 'daredevil' behaviour?

What is the neurological basis for people being seemingly fearless and engaging in risk-taking and daredevil behaviour? I am talking about those that frequently perform or participate in activities ...
3
votes
1answer
169 views

How strong is the need to belong?

Are there any studies that measure the need to belong? Does this need vary greatly from person to person or is there a tight deviation? What would explain why some have very little need to belong ...
3
votes
1answer
166 views

Frequency of schizophrenia symptoms related to mass surveillance?

Recently, mass surveillance by organisations like the NSA has become both more prevalent and more known to the public. Has the frequency of schizophrenia symptoms concerning mass surveillance (eg. ...
3
votes
2answers
104 views

Why do we anchor our happiness to short term situational comparisons rather than large scale events?

Why does our happiness seem to be most affected by recent, short term happenings rather than the high level trends of our lives? For example, a person has begun their life in a very humble or even ...
3
votes
1answer
2k views

What is the difference between implicit and explicit attitudes?

Although it is clear that implicit and explicit attitudes are not same, how they differ is not. I believe establishing the relation between them would surely help deducting it's meaning in context of ...
3
votes
1answer
93 views

What explains the relative importance of physical versus mental features in human mate selection?

I assume that it is the brain that has put human beings at the top of the food chain (Biped and opposable thumbs aside). Darwin's theory of survival of the fittest suggest that the best specimens of ...
3
votes
1answer
162 views

Are individuals who are generally jealous more likely to experience sexual jealousy?

Some people are just jealous of many things they perceive others to possess. Materially or as part of that person. Is a person who is prone to jealousy more likely to be jealous in romantic ...
3
votes
1answer
57 views

Stiffing the tip as groups get larger … like the prisoner's dilemma but …?

Is there a game theory analysis or other research or modeling describing the commonly perceived phenomenon whereby the amount by which people underpay a gratuity seems to be proportional to the number ...
3
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2answers
67 views

This is the 2,000th question posted. Why do people care about big round number events more than the surrounding events?

People seem to have a preference for celebrating "big round numbers", like the 2,000 post in the forum (although the 10,000 post would probably be more "special" - but not the 10,234 post, so it's not ...
3
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2answers
152 views

Average physical attraction time

How long, on average (and with as much other statistical data, e.g. standard deviation, as possible) does physical attraction between male and female in a permanent relationship last? I believe this ...