Below, we’ve posted titles and a brief quotation from some of our favorite non-Situationist situationist blogging during February 2009. (They are listed in alphabetical order by source.)
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From 3 Quarks Daily: “Stephen Daldry’s The Reader”
“Alan Stone in the Boston Review: The power of The Reader, however, is that it is psychologically believable. Schlink’s book is written in short chapters; each offers at least one telling psychological insight about dreams, about memory, about the disconnect between what I do and what I am. Schlink subtly raises the vexing and intriguing problem of responsibility and agency early in the novel.” Read more . . .
From Cognitive Daily: “Smells — even smells we don’t notice — affect our judgment of others”
“We know from studies on subliminal images and sounds that even when we’re not conscious of these things, they can affect our judgments and actions. But researchers have had difficulty finding any effect of odors that we can’t consciously identify. A team led by Wen Li saw procedural problems in those early studies: An odor that one person can’t detect might still be obvious to someone else. Even the same individual might perceive an odor sometimes and not others (“I thought I smelled smoke, officer!”). Read more . . .
From Cognitive Daily: “The words you can’t ignore, even if you see them for 1/10 of a second”
“One of stand-up comic George Carlin’s most famous routines was the seven words you can’t say on TV (obviously, not safe for work). He repeated the words over and over, and it was hilarious — especially back in the days before most people had cable. These days we’ve become desensitized to those words, and it’s hardly surprising any more to see them laced into casual conversation. Or is it?” Read more . . .
From Dr. X’s Free Associations: “Bad Faith or Partisan Blindness on the Right?”
“Sullivan says it’s bad faith: This Manzi post would be their argument going forward. Here’s why they are not being intellectually honest, and Manzi’s post includes the relevant facts. The GOP has passed what amounts to a spending and tax-cutting and borrowing stimulus package every year since George W. Bush came to office. They have added tens of trillions to future liabilities and they turned a surplus into a trillion dollar deficit – all in a time of growth. They then pick the one moment when demand is collapsing in an alarming spiral to argue that fiscal conservatism is non-negotiable. I mean: seriously.” Read more . . .
From Dr. X’s Free Associations: “The Real Media Bias”
“Eric Zorn argues that the real media bias is against complexity: Like a lot of other Illinois journalists, I’ve just spent the best part of the last year rhetorically pounding the stuffing out of the very white Rod Blagojevich and taking regular whacks at the disgraceful demagoguery of the similarly pasty John McCain. At the same time I was getting slapped around by detractors for allegedly going too easy on African-American candidate, now President Barack Obama.” Read more . . .
From Dr. X’s Free Associations: “What Systems Theory Says About Change”
“Corpus Callosum comments on all the fussing: One peculiar irony of the 2008 Presidential campaign is that McCain’s theme was “maverick,” and Obama’s was “change.” Those are different expressions of the same idea: do things differently… Those who study family dynamics are familiar with what happens in a social system when someone tries to change. Essentially, the person who is initiating change is told it is wrong. Then he is told to revert to the old ways (change back!), then he is warned of dire consequences. Also, the others attempt to enlist additional parties as allies against the agent of change (this is called triangulation)… This occurs even among others who wanted the change, who welcome the change, and who think it is a good idea.” Read more . . .
From Deliberations: “Sometimes It’s Hard to be a Woman”
“Being a woman is a negative, all other things being equal, but all other things are never equal.” That’s me talking, and I can explain. I was quoted last month in an article by Nora Tooher in Lawyers USA about challenges women lawyers face in the courtroom. (The article was inspired by Elizabeth Parks-Stamm’s article in the November issue of The Jury Expert about how female jurors respond to successful women; Nora found me because I wrote a short comment to Ms. Parks-Stamm’s article for TJE.)” Read more . . .
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For previous installments of “Situationism on the Blogosphere,” click on the “Blogroll” category in the right margin.