The Myth of Rationality

Some areas of study – business and conflict management, for example – are beginning to accept the fact that humans are not wholly rational thinkers, no matter how hard they try.  Thomas Kuhn introduced this thought in terms of science, though of course many scientists – led by Karl Popper – reject this theory outright (even though studies support it).  But, that was precisely Kuhn’s point: Scientists have preconceived worldviews which control their thinking more than mere facts.  Two scientists with different paradigms can view the same data and arrive at totally opposite conclusions, and not understand how the other can be so stupid.

So, when I see something like this, my response is merely, “Give me a break…”

I’ll be writing more on this topic in the days to come, but Loftus’ ridiculous post spurred me to introduce the concept now. In the meantime, read a couple of really interesting articles on this issue here.  It’s discussed as it relates to conflict resolution, but the principles are universal.

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