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The Believing Brain: From Ghosts and Gods to Politics and Conspiracies - How We Construct Beliefs and Reinforce Them as Truths

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The Believing Brain: From Ghosts and Gods to Politics and Conspiracies - How We Construct Beliefs and Reinforce Them as Truths Cover

ISBN13: 9781250008800
ISBN10: 1250008808
Condition: Standard
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Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

Synthesizing thirty years of research, psychologist and science historian Michael Shermer upends the traditional thinking about how humans form beliefs about the world. Simply put, beliefs come first and explanations for beliefs follow. The brain, Shermer argues, is a belief engine. Using sensory data that flow in through the senses, the brain naturally begins to look for and find patterns, and then infuses those patterns with meaning, forming beliefs. Once beliefs are formed the brain begins to look for and find confirmatory evidence in support of those beliefs, accelerating the process of reinforcing them, and round and round the process goes in a positive-feedback loop.

In The Believing Brain, Shermer provides countless real-world examples of how this process operates, from politics, economics, and religion to conspiracy theories, the supernatural, and the paranormal. And ultimately, he demonstrates why science is the best tool ever devised to determine whether or not our beliefs match reality.

About the Author

MICHAEL SHERMER is the author of Why People Believe Weird Things, The Science of Good and Evil, and eight other books on the evolution of human beliefs and behavior. He is the founding publisher of Skeptic magazine, the editor of Skeptic.com, a monthly columnist for Scientific American, and an adjunct professor at Claremont Graduate University. He lives in Southern California.

What Our Readers Are Saying

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Average customer rating based on 1 comment:

DANE, October 25, 2013 (view all comments by DANE)
Michael Shermer is the man behind Skeptic Magazine so when I saw this book I immediately picked it up. So glad I did as it's an excellent overview of exactly why we believe. His chapters cover everything from the supernatural to conspiracy theories. Once we know the mechanism's behind these irrational beliefs, we're armed to more successfully guard against them.
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Product Details

ISBN:
9781250008800
Subtitle:
From Ghosts and Gods to Politics and Conspiracies---How We Construct Beliefs and Reinforce Them as Truths
Author:
Shermer, Michael
Publisher:
St. Martin's Griffin
Subject:
General Psychology & Psychiatry
Subject:
Life Sciences - Evolution
Copyright:
Edition Description:
Trade paper
Publication Date:
20120807
Binding:
Electronic book text in proprietary or open standard format
Language:
English
Pages:
400
Dimensions:
8.25 x 5.5 in

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Related Subjects

Health and Self-Help » Psychology » Cognitive Science
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Science and Mathematics » Biology » Evolution
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