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Harry Potter and the Start-Ups: Geographic Variation in Courage

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A Harry Potter Quiz shows that American cities differ in how courageous their residents are, which may help to explain why some cities are economically more successful than others.

Celebrity Fat Shaming Has Ripple Effects on Women’s Implicit Anti-Fat Attitudes

Washington, DC and Montreal, Quebec - Celebrities, particularly female celebrities, are routinely criticized about their appearance—indeed, celebrity “fat-shaming” is a fairly regular pop-cultural phenomenon.  Although we might assume that these comments are trivial and inconsequential, the effects of these messages can extend well beyond the celebrity target and ripple through the population at large.

Psychology News Round-Up: ICYMI February 23, 2017

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We're here with another weekly roundup. Next week keep we will take break for convention coverage. Keep an eye out for new posts from our cadre of science writer interns covering the meeting. Recently in the news, written a post, or have selections you'd like us to consider? Email us, use the hashtag #SPSPblog, or tweet us directly @spspnews.

On the Blogs

After 50 years of explaining conservatism as flaw, new study suggests it's cultural

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Social psychologists are overwhelmingly liberal. Most people would probably say that if 90% of a field are liberal, that would be pretty skewed, but a recent survey suggests the real number is 12 liberals to 1 conservative.

Can We Foresee the Future? Explaining and Predicting Cultural Change

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What does the future hold? Our enduring fascination with predicting the future is reflected on the silver screen, as excitement builds over the Blade Runner sequel. We continue being mesmerized by ancient prophecies, such as Nostradamus' Quatrains. And we certainly pay very well to pundits, economists, and intelligence analysts who try to predict coming social, economic, and political events. Unfortunately, this abiding interest in prediction has not translated into the ability to forecast future events with much accuracy.

So Many in the West are Depressed Because They’re Expected Not to Be

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Depression is listed as the leading cause of disability worldwide, a standing to which it has progressed steadily over the past 20 years. Yet research shows a rather interesting pattern: depression is far more prevalent in Western cultures, such as the US, Canada, France, Germany and New Zealand, than in Eastern cultures, such as Taiwan, Korea, Japan and China.

Arts Engagement Can Help Counter Divisions in Society

Engagement with the arts can help societies counter economic, cultural and political divisions, new research co-ordinated by psychologists at the University of Kent shows.

The study  provides evidence that the arts can act as a key social psychological catalyst that can foster and maintain social co-operation.

Psychology News Round-Up: ICYMI July 14, 2017

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Each week, we recap featured posts from Character & Context and other blogs around the cyberspace, plus news stories and tweets worth a look. If you have an item you'd like us to consider, use the hashtag #SPSPblog or tweet us directly @spspnews.

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