Future Led. Student Driven.
#DukeSurprise

Course Description

“Surprise Endings:  Literature and Social Science,” taught in Spring 2013 by behavioral economics professor Dan Ariely and literature professor Cathy Davidson, is a for-credit Duke University course with a public component. Read more.

Student Blogs

Throughout the term, students used this public website to host online discussions of the seven key topics in the course.  The “BLOG” tab includes the reading assignment on the topic by the lively blog discussion by the students:

Video Interviews

with Professors Ariely and Davidson, conducted by the students

Each week, four students were in charge of creating a syllabus, giving the class a public blog assignment, giving feedback on that assignment, creating an interview, taping Profs Ariely and Davidson on camera, and then editing and posting the videos.  You can find the videos on the seven topics here:

Student Final Projects

At the end of the course, the students worked in their project teams to create their own online course units on each of the topics.  You can find their final projects here:

79 responses to “

  1. This sounds interesting. I’d like to receive updates by email please.

  2. The plan sounds cogent and exciting. Good Luck! I’ll be sitting in…

  3. Do Defaults save lives?

    A parallel to this article, or more of another article applying the same concept is an article I had read about savings plans for employees (will provide the link later can’t seem to find it at the moment). When it comes to saving and retirement plans most people have trouble determining which plan is best for them to enroll in, and most importantly have trouble opting-in to a retirement plan. What companies have done is to default their employees to a saving plan that will benefit them, and given the opportunity to opt-out, which as this article points out few people actually do. Therefore, this type of system has been used to ensure workers will have enough money for when it comes time to retire.
    Question for Professors: in what other industries do you think having defaults similar to this one will have a significant positive impact on the people that fall into the default?

    Shooting and Elephant

    This work exemplifies perfectly the influence of the masses. The innate need that people seem to have to please, act as the majority demands leads to actions that go against their moral beliefs and in this case even puts them to the horrifying experience of having to watch an animal agonize. It has always worried me to the extent that people will go if pressured by the crowed. Specially because there are many times the majority acts and pressures people based on misinterpreted or false information. We see this all the time with biased news and how misconceptions can lead a population to commit unjustifiable actions. For example genocide, which is founded on the majority’s belief of the inferiority of a minority leading to its extermination.
    Questions for Professors: Would you have shot the elephant?

  4. Obedience

    Ghosts of Abu Ghraib presents a dark portrait the atrocities that can arise in scenarios where some have power over others. My immediate reaction upon seeing the film was brutal disgust and revulsion at the actions of American military personnel. While this has not subsided, I did begin to try and understand the situation in its larger context. Beyond the dynamics of power and lack of power, there seemed also to be a sense among the Americans that these men were enemies of America and American livelihood, and were of the same cut as those who committed 911. The position of absolute power that the Americans held, in concert with some perverse idea of moral rectitude that guards felt they had over the prisoners probably provided a very fertile breeding ground for the brutality that has since become infamous.
    While Abu Ghraib was a particularly brutal example of abuse and the grave perversion that humans are capable of, I was also struck with the notion/question of to what degree does abuse in this vein occur daily in prisons across the world? War may perhaps the most ripe environment for such brutality, but prison abuse is most likely a daily occurrence.

    Question: In what other social arrangements besides the guard-prison relationship do we witness drastic changes in the behavior of participants?

    Evil

    After reading the Washington Post article “10 reasons why India has a sexual violence problem,” I again began to contemplate the various social factors that play into the evil acts that humans commit. While I believe that there are probably natural predilections that make some enjoy committing abuses more or make someone more inclined to rape, there are a lifetime of personal experiences and social conditioning that surely factor into crimes such as this. The Arab World and India both have a culture that places some (or all) blame on the rape victim, certainly a product of the dominant ideas about gender roles in these places. This serves to take responsibility away from the criminal in a way similar to those who blame the orders they were given. I do not mean to suggest that rapists believe they are teaching a lesson, but I do think that this helps people do something that some dark part of them might have desired already.

    It is important to imbue ideas about responsibility in scenarios like prison abuse and rape. We have enough research done that can help people to help be be aware of cases where they might be prone to lose their head. Will that change the violent, perverse tendencies that some people have more deeply ingrained in them than others? Probably not, but it will help the overall situation.

    Question: Do you believe that human evil is solely a product of our environments?

    Resistance
    The Sout Al Horeya video was a much lighter than the other material for this week, yet, I was unable to escape the thought that democracy in Egypt has paved the way for a new boss (albeit democratically elected)–the Muslim Brotherhood–that’s probably worse than the old boss, Mubarak. The more liberal and secular groups at the heart of the uprising are seeing their vision of the revolution hijacked by more tightly organized Islamist bloc. This has hurt the economy and prompted more protest from Egyptians who are seeing backlash from ruling Muslim Brotherhood security forces that echoes the violence of Mubarak’s regime. It makes me wonder what the writers/singers of this song would have to say two years later.

    Question: Does the revolutionaries’ perception of the degree of evil of an oppressing regime correlate with the aggressiveness of their revolt? Assuming they are successful, does the ensuing regime tend to last longer or fall apart more quickly?

  5. May I simply say what a relief to find someone who actually knows what they are discussing on the net. You definitely know how to bring a problem to light and make it important. More people need to check this out and understand this side of the story. I was surprised that you’re not more popular since you certainly possess the gift.

  6. 1) Trading Races
    I think that Trading Races is a compelling simulation that forces participants to take on different perspectives in a controversial debate over prejudice. The fact that the simulation focuses on racial contexts and themes as they relate to student life at the University of Michigan is an effective way of driving home the variety of opinions at stake. I must agree with previous commentary on this blog in that I imagine it is difficult for students to truly separate their own races and identities from the characters that they adopt in this simulation. I wonder whether this game would go over well at Duke or not. I feel that most students would agree that we shouldn’t have to force identities upon one another for us to truly understand each other. I think that understanding each other comes from fostering a sense of openness in our culture at Duke. I believe we are doing a much better job with this.

    Question:
    The term “color blindness” comes up during dialogue about racial differences. How do you think we may promote a culture that allows us to be more color blind and accepting of one another? Aren’t we born color blind? At what age do we start to see people differently?

    2) Color Blindness and Interracial Interaction:
    I think this study reaffirms how uncomfortable people have become over differences in race and the effects it has on our communication. The research showed that white participants were comfortable categorizing faces based on race, but when white participants played a political correctness game they were less likely to use race as a descriptor when paired with a black partners. After observing the participants they concluded that the more reluctant white participants were to use race in the presence of black participants, the more unfriendly they appeared. The takeaway shows that strategic efforts to appear color blind have mixed results. I am not surprised by these results. I think that race is a subject that makes people very uncomfortable. The topic of political correctness is something that is very sensitive, especially at a University. The conclusion puts in well in that “the desire to avoid prejudice produces mixed outcomes in social interactions.”

    Question:
    In the conclusion of this article the researchers suggest that the fact that white participants repeated their antisocial patterns shows that we are heading in the right direction toward ameliorating racial bias. This seems like a bold claim. Do you agree with their commentary here?

    3) Rethink Affirmative Action:
    I found Bradshaw’s letter to be an aggressive response to affirmative action I think the solution here is that there simply needs to be more transparency from the University as to how they are promoting affirmative action in the admissions room. Can they prove that a white candidate with the same admissions profile as a minority candidate both have the same shot? What does it whittle down to? Can they prove that reviewing applications is not just a quotas game of stacks organized by race, but rather a more holistic process by which every candidate receives admission on merit? I agree with Bradshaw that we shouldn’t be defined by our race. We shouldn’t be reduced to the (caucasian) (black) (latino) check boxes on the Common Application. For our world to become color blind, these conventions need to be eradicated.

    Question:
    There is this controversy over “reverse discrimination” not only in admissions rooms but also in the job market. Do you think that white candidates are at a disadvantage when up against minorities for full time jobs?

  7. Category 1: Adeline Koh’s Trading Races

    1) I would love to experience this game for myself and see what the effects end up being. I think both sides have valid arguments in the issue of Affirmative Action, and no one really has the “right” answer to this problem. On either end, someone is being discriminated against. I think this is an interesting concept but I would love to learn more about exactly how they assigned roles to people. The website mentioned this briefly, but not all African Americans are going to be for affirmative action, and not all Caucasians are going to be against it. How do they take into account the participants’ race AND their political views? I’d like to know what all the different roles were, especially how they incorporated other races into the game (i.e. Asians, Latinos..where do they fit in?) It will be a great opportunity to actually ask Adeline Koh in class about the specifics of this game and how it accounts for all different racial and economic factors. The experience of having to step into another person’s shoes, however, is definitely an invaluable one.

    2) What factors besides race do you think influence a person’s stance on affirmative action?

    Category 2: Are Emily and Brendan More Employable than Lakisha and Jamal?

    1) I’ve heard about this study before, and, although the results are predictable, the 50% difference is quite astonishing. I think the study limits itself, however, in only using African sounding names. I’d like to see the same study done for Asian, Latino, or Native American sounding names. My biggest qualm about all of these readings is that they all seem to focus solely on discrimination against or affirmative action for African Americans, when racial effects clearly have a huge impact across all races. I’d be interested in learning whether Asian sounding names are discriminated against as well, or if they are actually a bonus, and if so, in what types of jobs? And for the original study, the “four occupational categories” were sales, administrative support, clerical, and customer services – all of these “categories” essentially encompass the same skills – interpersonal and communication skills. Why didn’t this study do a better job of breaking down industries? Wouldn’t the type of job these applicants are applying for make a big difference in the findings? I’d like to know what the results might be for engineers, doctors, researchers, etc. I want to know to what extent affirmative action counteracts the effects of discrimination based on name, and I think we need to look at studies that include more factors in order to really get a better picture.

    2) Do you think parents should start taking this factor into account when naming their kids? Is it an appropriate sacrifice to give a child a “western sounding” name in order to give him/her a higher chance of success in this country?

    Category 3: Rethink Affirmative Action

    1) I’m tempted to comment on the anti-feminist article, but I’ll save those thoughts for when we actually get to the gender topic a couple of weeks from now. I think this affirmative action article is interesting because the author builds his argument on the assumption that ethnicity does not play a significant role in diversity of thought, and this assumption is not well supported. Perhaps the author, as a freshman, has not had enough experience in classes or activities at Duke yet to have an understanding of the depth of contribution cultural perspectives can have on academic, professional, and personal growth. As a senior and leader of the largest umbrella cultural organization on campus, I have interacted with students from all parts of the world and can say that they have had a huge impact on the way I have viewed every controversial issue on campus. I believe that ethnic and international diversity is absolutely essential to building a rich and multifaceted campus, but the extent of this effect cannot be fully realized unless an individual takes the initiative to integrate themselves in a diverse social and academic environment. Unfortunately, most people at Duke do not do this, and the self-segregation that occurs here is the biggest obstacle we face as a community, and the greatest source of division I have seen in my four years at Duke.

    2) How long do you think self-segregation will occur to the extent that we see today, and at what point do you think our campus or nation can reach full integration?

  8. Adeline Koh’s Trading Races seems like a very interesting way to learn about different races the prejudices that exist and have existed within our culture over time. Sometimes the best way to view somebody else’s perspective is in their shoes, so I think creating a role playing game to force one to live in the time period of a certain character with outside influences, is the only way somebody can actually understand the feelings and emotions one feels towards somebody who is different than themselves.
    The PBS documentary is a classic example of how people (not just children) can be brainwashed into thinking something is right and something is wrong. It is sort of a scary society we live in to know that we are so easily manipulated into thinking a certain way. If higher authority tell us what to think and how to feel, we are no longer living in a free country. I do, however, think that teaching children this lesson at such a young age can be extremely helpful, because making the children feel so bad about themselves definitely helps them remember the way they feel when they are being judged. The most powerful part of the video comes at the end when the children have all grown up and talk about the powerful impact that particular lesson had on their lives. It was life-changing for them and they all immediately understood the evil in prejudice thinking and feeling.
    The last literary section about the the working wages was a very interesting one. It brings up the point of women getting paid equally and how this can actually have a negative impact on the competitiveness of a firm. Both genders being equally paid is of course not behind motives of bigotry, but simply an unconscious pattern which has occurred over many many years. I had never thought about the way the equal pay and “sexist” firms would hurt a company’s ability to compete in the market, but it seems like there is a lot if evidence to prove this point.

  9. 1)I am a huge Tarantino fan. He penetrates ordinary expectations about social interactions using violent scenes such as this example from Pulp Fiction featuring Vincent and Marvin.The fact that Vincent is completely numb in his reaction to accidentally shooting him in the face solidifies the absence of social norms. This is also evident in Tarantino’s film inglorious bastards, which is controversial for portraying a playful and violent reimagination of the holocaust. Tarantino’s satirization of morality and social codes is certainly his hallmark, although I can’t say whether I find his films that compelling…

    2)A tent city for fun and profit
    I think that K-ville and tenting is one of the most impressive aspects of Duke student culture. It shows the lengths students are willing to take to support their team, and it shows a commitment to maintaining camaraderie year after year. And from and architectural perspective, the tents are impressively designed. But this article thinks about how the tenting and craziness is all part of a larger money making machine for Duke, which is true. The duke basketball team, coach k, the culture is all integral to maintaining dukes brand equity. I think the fact that some professors are unsupportive of this culture is important to the conversation. Completing labs and assignments in a cold tent with spotty wifi wasn’t part of the academic plan set out for us upon acceptance to Duke. I have never tented. I understand the “herd mentality”, but I’m not a part of that herd. Some friends of mine recently acknowledges that the protocols for walk up line are arguably as bad as hazing. Specific time checks, subjection to cold conditions. When it comes to this social tradition at Duke, I see the good and the bad after reading this article.

    Question: do you think that the tenting policies and regulations could be considered hazing? Should students have to camp out in cold conditions?

    3) Facebook Article
    I took Cybernetworks and the Global Village at duke with professor Lin and learned a great deal about strong ties vs. weak or loose ties within a social network. The majority of our network is comprised of loose ties, which can still affect us with messaging. To me the most compelling aspect of the article was that friendships in real life only account for about 7 percent of the ties on Facebook, but are responsible for 100 percent of the effect of the message spreading through the network. I suppose the idea is that when the messaging is passed through our close ties, we are more inclined to listen and act on the content than if it were relayed by a weak tie. Either way, political messaging on Facebook is introducing a paradigm shirt for how candidates engage the electorate. I can see how this relates to social proof. If our close friends declare that they voted for X candidate, will we be inclined to do so too?

    Question: I’ve read literature on e-democracy. studies show that there is signifcant activity in Europe, and that there is a direct correlation between high Internet rates and voter engagement. In Italy, for example, voters have turned to social media for e-petitions and to promote strong voter turnouts during elections. How do you think the proliferation of Internet access will change elections globally? Will we be able to cast ballots on the web?

    4) The odd one helps us think about an entirely different makeup of social order. I found the layout of the rules in the introduction to be the most intriguing component of the piece. For example, Huxley writes “There is no such an institute as a family, people are supposed to change partners as often as they can .” This suggests a radical shift from social norms as we know them, in that monogamy and family institutions are accepted in our society. I also think that his theory of reducing people to Alphas (intelligent ones)and Epsilons (those who do the dirty work) is a unique way of looking at social order. Perhaps it is a social commentary on white collar vs blue collar workers in our society.

    Overall response:
    I think these readings and video were well selected. I felt myself thinking about the various ways in which social norms are challenged or, in the case of Facebook political activity, perpetuated. As far as my thoughts on social proof, I think that we are constantly influenced by our peers, family and community. It is hard to not follow the herd or isolate yourself from the pack. I think that social proof accounts for so much of our behavior – our need to seek approval, our materialism, our fixation with social media and our online identities.

  10. Thank you for opening this wonderful course to the public! What a dynamic rethinking of MOOCs with important new strategies for on-site teaching also. I have watched the videos as they are posted, read the articles, and followed some of the extensive student blogging (wish I had time to read more of it). It gives me the chance to “go back to school” and realign some of my own classroom practices. (I’m a professor in the Spanish Department at UC Santa Barbara.)

    Already this quarter, I’ve told my literature students about various articles Dan’s posted–self-control, deadlines, attention blindness, defaults, etc. and implemented new learning strategies. Rather than assigning term papers to be turned in two weeks later (usually spewed out a day or two prior), I’ve set up a series of deadlines for them to blog in smaller groups–brainstorming, posting thesis statements, opening paragraphs, rough drafts, and commenting on fellow students’ work over the two weeks. This brought up discussions about American individualism, team work, interactive learning, generosity, and re-thinking received notions of originality and property. Yesterday I showed them the cucumber/grape video to urge transcending our competitive instincts in this project at least.

    I hope soon to implement new iterations of the term paper that will involve careful thinking and writing processes with multimedia enhancements. Next quarter I’ll be teaching an Honors Seminar on enhanced e-books in which we’ll integrate some of the team strategies I learned about in your class with reading, writing, and thinking about this new cultural phenomenon. We’ll be using iBook Author for individual writing projects and, ultimately, a class authored volume posted in iBooks.

    I look forward to the rest of the readings, the final student projects, and the chance to “be there” through the videos. Congratulations to all the students, grad assistants, videographers, Cathy and Dan for a superb learning experience and for sharing this with us far and near.

  11. 1) A) I had to watch the clip a couple of times before I understood what exactly was going on. I mean, I followed the shooting part while watching it the first time, but it was so surprising that I had to re-watch the beginning conversation. I’ve never seen Pulp Fiction before, so the shooting was completely unexpected. The first time I didn’t even see Travolta point the gun, but upon watching the clip the second time I caught more details. What surprised me about this clip was how calmly each Travolta and Samuel Jackson’s characters reacted to the accident, as if it were some other minor problem. Jackson matter-of-factly calls up his partner to cover up the crime, without any delay. These are very strange reactions, especially since the killing is so graphic and unpredicted.

    B) Category 2 – Herd mentality:

    I remember watching an animated version of “The Emperor’s New Clothes” as a child and thinking how ridiculous the whole story was. I was, perhaps, more likely to act like the child who pointed out that the emperor was naked, rather than one of the ministers who pretended there was a garment, afraid of looking stupid if I did not. Reading this story again as a young adult, I realize how much herd mentality persists in our lives. Herd mentality can be used to explain tenting for the Duke-UNC game, where students sacrifice a month of sleep and comfort to attend a single, 2-hour basketball game. Maybe it’s because I attended an arts high school where there was no athletic team spirit, but I never really understood tenting. I originally wanted to tent for the experience. Once I saw what the experience entailed, however, I changed my mind. From the essay “A Tent City for Fun and Profit”, I learned that , herd mentality comes at a cost besides the cold and sleepless nights: “At colleges with teams in the N.C.A.A. men’s basketball tournament, library patrons view 6 percent fewer articles a day as long as the team is in the tournament; on the day immediately after a team wins in an upset or a close game, library use plunges by 19 percent.” This figure was the most astonishing to me, although I realize it shouldn’t have been so surprising. After all, the cost of the Emperor’s herd mentality was that he paid the people who robbed him and paraded naked before his people.

    QUESTION: Are there any ways to stop herd mentality? Biologically and psychologically, why does herd mentality persist in humans?

    Category 3 – Value and belief creation:

    In each fiction example in this category, the characters behave in a world with society-driven values.

    Perhaps one of the best scenes in the entire movie, the clip from “Mean Girls” that introduces Regina George depicts exactly how I imagine social proof. In Mean Girls, the characters function according to the self-imposed rules of the most social value-driven environment: high school. Another clip from the movie, not provided in the links, that I think is worth mentioning is the scene where Lindsay Lohan’s character learns about the cliques of high school based on where they sit in the cafeteria, where students are mostly divided into social groups by external characteristics or interests. Cliques are perpetuated because students have come to believe over time that there are no alternatives to cliques; cliques become, in effect, a self-perpetuating default.

    On Facebook, we make posts that we think will get the most “Likes”, which we base on what is popular in our Newsfeed. Gardner’s article shows how social proof works even in online environments. Facebook creates values by showing us what our friends like, and suggesting pages based on what our friends like. Facebook, therefore, works as an instrument for value creation by making people’s activity more visible than ever before. As a result, there are infinitely more opportunities to gain the approval of our friends by posting things like “I voted!” or liking a comedian’s Facebook page.

    Question: How do we overcome the types of behaviors that result from these types of self-created value-driven environments? Are these conventions necessarily all bad?

    Category 4: Failure to detect social proof

    In the Brave New World example I think there are actually two instances of failing to detect social proof. First, there’s Bernard, who recognizes that there is no freedom in his society, yet fails to conform to society (and therefore ignores social proof theory). And then there’s Lenina and everyone else who fail to recognize the social proof they create. The study “Normative Social Influence is Underdetected” shows how this is possible: we underestimate the effect of social influence on our behaviors. In Brave New World, everyone except Bernard is affected by strong social influences. Because they are conditioned to function in their particular society, they live blind to the very norms they follow.

    Both literature and social science research show that it is difficult to detect social proof, especially upon introspection. How then, do we go about detecting social proof when we are the Leninas in our environment? Why is there such a stigma against the Bernards, or “odd ones”?

    2) In my own life, social proof is everywhere. The best example, however, occurred one day right after our class. In one of the first weeks of the semester, everyone exited Smith and waited at the Smith Warehouse bus stop where the buses were going to west. Since I saw everyone waiting there, I assumed that someone had checked Transloc and there must be a C-1-5 bus coming soon. After waiting for five minutes and no bus had not yet come, I finally checked my phone, and saw that there was no bus nearby. One person (or a group of people) had merely gathered at the bus stop and everyone else assumed that the crowd had some additional wisdom. Instead, we all ended up waiting for quite some time.

  12. Discuss any insights, objections, parallels, or connections that you gained from these readings (DO NOT include summaries of the readings).

    What questions do you have that you would like to hear Professors Ariely and Davidson discuss and offer their opinions on?

    Category 1
    dismay

    Category 2

    “The Emperor’s New Clothes” demonstrates how very profitable social proof can be. Materialism has escalated in the United States fostering opinion that it may be a cornerstone of societal patterns. It seems to me that social proof increases materialistic tendencies because our tangible, quantifiable goods at market price can be easily compared to those of other people. We learned in the interview on relativity and default with Professors Cathy and Dan that we often make decisions based on comparisons. It is easy to compare the progress of us with others in our lives when achievement can be easily empirically measured.

    The Obedience, Evil and Resistance group posted the article about the five psychological experiments that prove humanity is doomed. My “favorite” of the experiments proved to be The Asch Conformity Experiment (1953). The Asch Conformity Experiment illustrated that the beliefs of even strangers greatly impact maybe not what we belief, but what we communicate out loud. I wonder how to measure if there is a difference in social proof amongst friends and strangers. Are we more comfortable with friends and open about our opinions or are we more concerned with the long-term consequences of our actions? On the other hand we could also foster more trust for friends compared to strangers leading to more herd behavior. I would ask Professors Cathy and Dan if they think advertisements are as strong of determinants as conversations with friends?

    Category 3

    Social media like Facebook and Twitter increase the opportunities for the social proof impact of one individual. Differences otherwise hidden or ignored can become apparent even with the absence of an action. The internet has transformed how we are impacted by norms. Voting I think now is not a purely personal decision even though there is no one with you in the voting booth. In my social media circles the absence of posting political comments or statuses on Facebook is meaningful. Despite all of these new social media inputs some contributing factors to social proof might always take present. For example the parent’s political values are huge factor of those of their children . In a Gallup study (71%) of teenagers said their social and political ideology is about the same their parents.

    Question: Muzafer Sherif writes that norms appear stupid, and contrary to all notions of “common sense,” to a person whose thinking and behavior are regulated by norms of a different culture. Does social proof encourage a culture to be more extreme or must cultural norms remain tame to be appropriate for the greatest number of people?

    Category 4

    The first question that came to mind while reading the Hans Christian Anderson piece was why did the emperor never noticed that he wasn’t wearing clothes? Did he question his own self-confidence and faith as a leader? As we discussed during the relativity and default interview it is much easier to compare others than comparing our own qualities with others. The piece by J.M. Noland confirms these ideas. Yet our own understandings of our own decisions may be rather context specific. The excerpt from Brave New World discusses how says, “Adults intellectually and during working hours… Infants where feeling and desire are concerned”(4). I am very interest how the character, Bernard, thinks that we can be rational in the workplace and then completely irrational in our social lives. This is very true for Duke Students who according to the article ”A Tent City for Fun and Profit” who might have the privilege to transform their reality into another (crazier) version in spare time. The article highlights the seemingly humble conditions of K-ville compared to the grand resources. The author, Bill Morris, believes that more privileged behavior could include not to utilizing basic comforts. I wonder what percentage of Duke students who have tented in K-ville have actually camped in natural environments?

    Taking into account Professor Cathy’s experience noticing the gorilla I notice two steps necessary for social advancement: First we must have the capacity to recognize the gorilla, and second we must have the courage to voice the information.
    Question: Which of these steps is a more difficult challenge for us?

    Where do you see social proof in your own life?

    I really enjoyed the project proposed by the Self Control group that utilizes social proof in order to mitigate our weaknesses or even exceed them. While I very much enjoyed the readings this week, most of the themes focus on the negative possibilities of social proof. This week I have noticed how social proof plays into my own involvement in philanthropic endeavors and volunteering. This semester I often considered my preferences to be against social proof common at Duke including tenting and Greek life. Yet even our decisions to act differently are contingent upon these norms. In my case what I would have considered a natural behavior transformed into active decisions at Duke University. Even when we go against norms we still operate under the same assumptions and center of reference. Thus in my life I don’t consider my alternative choices to be independent.

  13. Altruism

    The discussion of altruism is both fascinating and extremely relevant to the topic of dishonesty. Understanding the scientific underpinnings of altruism provides an important element to supplement the philosophical debates I have always had about altruism. One interesting connection this reading prompted me to make was to Peter Kropotkin’s Mutual Aid commentary that I read in a prior class. Kropotkin observes in both history and in biology the existence of individuals prospering through cooperation and collaboration. His thesis is that populations that thrive are not divided and in competition, they are rather the populations that stress mutual aid and altruism. Kropotkin and Triver’s reading are mutually reinforcing and make for a compelling narrative about the value of altruism. I am a little uncertain as to whether this truly constitutes altruism though. I would ask the professors, if an individual makes a short-term sacrifice in expectation of its long term benefit, is this truly altruism? Isn’t this rather an example of the individual making a self-serving cost-benefit calculation that is just cognizant of the long run?

    Narcissism

    I felt this research provided an interesting insight to the connection between narcissism and dishonesty – particularly as it pertains to academic cheating. Yet, I felt its conclusions were relatively unsurprising and failed to draw more important implications from the research. The recent Harvard cheating scandal elucidates that those who are typically most ambitious in their pursuit of success, are also those who use the least honest means to achieve their desired ends. I want to stress that this should not be interpreted as a hasty generalization; I am not speaking about all students at elite universities or all successful people. I am saying that there is a high prevalence of cheating at elite institutions. Therefore, I would be far more interested in learning about where narcissism comes from. The essay opens discussion but does not reach a definitive solution as to whether narcissism is a psychological disorder or a trait. Such a discussion would have been far more insightful. Therefore, I would ask the Professors to clarify the argument as to whether narcissism should be characterized as a trait or a disorder? Additionally, I would like for them to offer insight as to how we might mitigate narcissism at top universities and amongst elite populations especially by fostering greater empathy, and collaborative skills amongst these populations?

    The Lie

    This short story was a remarkably compelling – and hyperbolic — demonstration of the self-perpetuating nature of dishonesty. Once someone tells a lie, it becomes much easier to rationalize the next lie. To put it in economic terms, lying has a high entry cost but then each individual lie seems to have a lower marginal cost. This is pretty intuitive logic; lies pile on each other and an old lie often necessitates new lies to cover them up. This may be intuitive, yet it is still a disturbing demonstration of human nature. It helps explain contemporary examples of dishonesty, such as Bernie Madoff’s ponzi scheme. The lie grew so large and so profound that they were almost believe as true and rationalized as acceptable. Their collapse was imminent but the perpetrators were ignorant of this fact. So, my questions for the professors is how do people rationalize lies and justify them? Do we forget about the depravity of a lie as we become more entrenched in it?

    Freakonomics

    I think there is a discussion that emerges near the end of the first chapter that is essential to this class discussion on dishonesty and deeply rooted in major philosophical debates. Smith wrote of the “innate honesty of mankind.” Socrates agreed “that people are generally good even without enforcement” (49) Locke agreed with this classical liberal position in the innate goodness of man. Hobbes disagreed. He and Burke and other conservatives have championed this argument as the idea underlying their political philosophy. They caution against unchecked freedom because they believe man must be kept in check by institutions and a social contract that cedes some freedoms for necessary securities. I am unconvinced that Freakonomics resolves this underlying and deep philosophical divide. Are people innately good and honest? If so, how can we understand narcissism and Ponzi Schemes and the prevalence of dishonesty throughout society? The book only presents a cursory discussion of this crucial debate. I hope the Professors can comment more on it. Do you view human nature from a Hobbesian or Lockean viewpoint? Are individuals inherently honest and good or are they deceptive and sinful?

  14. Greetings! Very useful advice in this particular post! It’s the little changes that will make the greatest changes. Many thanks for sharing!

  15. Aw, this was a very good post. Taking the time and actual effort to make a good article… but what can I say… I hesitate a whole lot and don’t manage to get anything done.

  16. Howdy, There’s no doubt that your website might be having web browser compatibility issues. Whenever I take a look at your blog in Safari, it looks fine however, if opening in I.E., it has some overlapping issues. I merely wanted to provide you with a quick heads up! Other than that, fantastic site!

  17. After I initially left a comment I appear to have clicked on the -Notify me when new comments are added- checkbox and from now on every time a comment is added I recieve four emails with the exact same comment. Is there a means you are able to remove me from that service? Kudos!

  18. You ought to be a part of a contest for one of the highest quality websites on the internet. I’m going to recommend this blog!

  19. Oh my goodness! Awesome article dude! Many thanks, However I am encountering difficulties with your RSS. I don’t know why I cannot subscribe to it. Is there anybody having identical RSS problems? Anybody who knows the answer can you kindly respond? Thanx!!

  20. Very nice article. I absolutely love this site. Continue the good work!

  21. Next time I read a blog, I hope that it doesn’t disappoint me as much as this particular one. After all, Yes, it was my choice to read through, however I genuinely thought you’d have something useful to say. All I hear is a bunch of crying about something that you could possibly fix if you weren’t too busy seeking attention.

  22. Hello there! This blog post couldn’t be written much better! Looking through this post reminds me of my previous roommate! He continually kept preaching about this. I most certainly will forward this information to him. Pretty sure he’s going to have a good read. Thanks for sharing!

  23. Hi there, I do believe your blog could be having web browser compatibility issues. Whenever I take a look at your website in Safari, it looks fine but when opening in I.E., it has some overlapping issues. I merely wanted to give you a quick heads up! Apart from that, great blog!

  24. I mentioned in my Rebbeca Van Dyck article, I headed over for the new Facebook campus to photograph CSO (Chief Security Officer) Joe

  25. Hey I really liked reading your website . The information were really informative. Thank you so much!

  26. There is noticeably a bunch to realize about this. I suppose you made some nice points in features also.

  27. I became honored to get a call from my friend immediately he found the important points shared on your site. Reading through your blog publication is a real fantastic experience. Many thanks for considering readers much like me, and I want for you the best of achievements for a professional in this field.

  28. What’s Taking place i am new to this, I stumbled upon this I have found It positively useful and it has helped me out loads.
    I hope to contribute & help different users like its aided me.

    Good job.

  29. I have been exploring for a bit for any high quality articles or weblog posts on this kind of house .
    Exloring in Yahoo I at last stumbled upoln this website.
    Studying this info So i am gllad to exhibit that I ave an incredibly excellent uncanny
    feeling I found out exactly what I needed. I such a lot indisputably wikl make sure to do not disregard this web site and give it a ook on
    a constant basis.

    Also visit my blog post how to make money

  30. Very nice article indeed

  31. While Danny’s comment (or at least the serious part of this) makes sense, I would not at all be surprised to hear information of a brand new report. I question it’s anything to do with Blaqk Audio, because Hunter is not concerned with that. While it will take quite some time to publish, record and to produce record, there were delicate hints at Davey and Jade potentially writing together as early as last year. Today, needless to say, a lot of this is only me wanting AFI # 9 to fit the routine laid by Sing the Sorrow, Decemberunderground and Accident Love. But, three of them absolutely coming to the Bay Area, Adam probably coming for the Bay and (AT LEAST) Davey and Jade pretty definitely staying together points to AFI information. This excites me significantly, though I concur that a tag is more likely what is happening. And, what the heck was the deal with that specific picture?

  32. Delightful writing! Though I’m more interested in the classy theme you’re using, mind sharing it’s title?

  33. Great web site you’ve got here.. It’s difficult to find good quality writing like yours nowadays. I truly appreciate individuals like you! Take care!!

  34. What’s up friends, its enormous article regarding tutoringand fully defined,
    keep it up all the time.

  35. I have read a few excellent stuff here. Certainly price
    bookmarking for revisiting. I surprise how a lot effort you set to cresate the sort of excellent informative web site.

  36. Thank you for the good writeup. It in fact was a enjoyment account it.
    Look complicated to far delivered agreeable from you! By the way, how could we keep
    up a correspondence?

  37. David, you you should not receive copies of your previous letters. As the letters go forward that variety might be in the hundreds. But if there’s a particular letter send us an email and maybe we can figure something out.

  38. on den Kindern zählen – die Fam.

  39. whoah this weblog is great i love studying your posts. Keep up the great work! You understand, lots of people are searching round for this info, you could help them greatly.

  40. So, with some 20 of Android phones sold according to Gartner unaccounted for in Google activations, there remains a question. How easy is it to run an Android phone without getting Google involved?

  41. 日本最高級スーパーコピーブランド時計激安通販専門店,高品質時計コピー,2015最新作、国際ブランド腕時計コピー、業界唯一無二.世界一流の高品質ブランドコピー時計,当店はスーパーコピー時計専門店,販売以下世界一流ブランドコピー時計:ロレックスコピー、ウブロコピー、オメガコピー、シャネルコピー…ンプルに見えて目を奪われてしまう独創的なブルガリのラインアップです。1884年ブルガリの創始者ソティリオ?ブルガリが銀細工師の一族としてイタリ アにオープン。ブルガリ?ブルガリシリーズ。古代ローマの円形競技場をモチーフにした時計「アンフィテアトロ」、若い世代向けの腕時計「ソロテンポ」を発 表。2000年には新会社ダニエル?ロード&ジェラルド?ジェンダ オート?オルロジュリー社を設立しました。本物ブランド時計に間違える程のスーパーコピー時計通販!スーパーコピーは業界n級品最高品質に挑戦!ロレックスコピー,パネライコピー,ウブロコピー,オメガコピー,ルイ?ヴィトンコピー,エルメスコピーを初め世界中有名なスーパーコピーブランドを激安で通販しております!HERMES(バッグ、時計) CHANEL(バッグ、時計)LOUIS VUITTON(バッグ、時計) BVLGARI時計Christian Dior(バッグ、小物) COACH(バッグ)GUCCI(バッグ、小物) ROLEX(時計)OMEGA(時計) IWC(時計)
    スーパーコピー腕時計,ロレックスコピー,ブライトリングコピー,ボーム&メルシエコピー時計コピー業界最高峰スーパーコピー時計通販専門!7年以上の販売実績を 持つ時計コピー老舗!時計コピーであれば何でも揃えられます コピー時計 時計スーパーコピー通販専門店!時計コピー時計販売通販! コピー時計スーパー コピー等の 最高級のレプリカコピー時計を販売ロレックスコピー,ガガミラノコピー ,IWCコピー ,オメガコピー ,フェラーリコピー ,フランクミュラーコピー ,ベル&ロスコピー ,各種のブランドはコピーを表しますコピーを表して、時計をコピーして、スーパーコピーは代 金引換払いにして、スーパーはブランドをコピーして、スー パーは時計をコピーして代金引換払いにして、スーパーは時 計をコピーして、スーパーは腕時計をコピーして、ブランド はスーパーマーケットを表してコピーして、ブランドのスー パーマーケットはコピーして、ブランドはコピーを表して、 腕時計はコピーします ,ボーム&メルシエコピー時計コピー業界最高峰スーパーコピー時計通販専門!7年以上の販売実績を 持つ時計コピー老舗!時計コピーであれば何でも揃えられます コピー時計 時計スーパーコピー通販専門店!時計コピー時計販売通販! コピー時計スーパー コピー等の 最高級のレプリカコピー時計を販売ロレックスコピー,ガガミラノコピー ,IWCコピー ,オメガコピー ,フェラーリコピー ,フランクミュラーコピー ,ベル&ロスコピー ,各種のブランドはコピーを表しますコピーを表して、時計をコピーして、スーパーコピーは代 金引換払いにして、スーパーはブランドをコピーして、スー パーは時計をコピーして代金引換払いにして、スーパーは時 計をコピーして、スーパーは腕時計をコピーして、ブランド はスーパーマーケットを表してコピーして、ブランドのスー パーマーケットはコピーして、ブランドはコピーを表して、 腕時計はコピーします http://www.gowatchs.com/brand-208.html

  42. スーパーブランドコピー激安販売!
    スーパーコピー時計専売店当店は海外安心と信頼のスーパーコピーブライトリング、代引き店です.正規品と同等品質のシャネル コピー代引き,品質が秀逸,値段が激安!ブライトリングコピー,代引きなどの商品や情報が満載!全商品写真は100%実物撮影です! お客様の満足度は業界No.1です!スーパーコピー時計,時計コピー ,ブランド時計コピー販売(n級品)店舗 ブランド腕時計(ロレックス,ブライトリング,タグホイヤー,オメガ,ガガミラノなど)の最新 情報やイベントを紹介する正規販売店と腕時計コピーの専門サイトです。当店はロレックスやパテックフィリップなどの新品スーパーコピー時計の販売と。 http://www.newkakaku.net/he.htm

  43. 2015ブランド財布コピールイヴィトン財布コピー,シャネル財布コピー,グッチ財布コピー,エルメス財布コピークロエ財布コピー,ブラダ財布コピー,ブルガリ財布コピー,ドルチェ&ガッバ―ナ財布コピーバレンシアガ財布コピー,ボッテガ.ヴェネタ財布コピーロレックス時計コピー,ブルガリ時計コピー,フランク ミュラー時計コピーシャネル時計コピー,カルティエ時計コピー_オメガ時計コピー,IWC時計コピールイヴィトン時計コピー,オーデマ ピゲ時計コピー,ブライトリング時計コピーコピーブランド、ブランド激安、人気ブランドの販売、通販、オークション、新作のスーパーコピーブランドコピー、韓国スーパーコピー、ブランド激安、偽物ブランド、ブランドバッグ、激安かばん、ルイヴィトン偽物、財布激安.商品は全く写真の通りです。
    スーパーコピーブランド格安販売店はこちらへ!品々の激安価格に持ったスーパーコピーブランド 代引きの新作はお客様に提供されます。安心、迅速、確実、お客様の手元にお届け致します。★弊社は9年の豊富な経験と実績を持っております。★一流の素材を選択し、精巧な作り方でまるで本物のようなな製品を造ります。★品質を重視、納期も厳守、お客様第一主義を貫きは当社の方針です。★驚きの低価格で商品をお客様に提供致します!★早速に購入へようこそ! http://www.brandiwc.com/brand-2-copy-0.html

  44. スーパーコピーブランド弊社は安心と信頼のスーパーコピーブランド (N級品)専門店です!全国送料無料!日本一流品質のスーパーコピー時計、ブランド財布コピー、ブランドバッグコピー新作最新入荷!ロレックススーパーコピー,ウブロ スーパーコピー,ブランド時計 コピー,ブランド スーパーコピー,コピーブランド 通販,スーパーコピー 財布その他の世界一流ブランドコピーを取り扱っています。商品は全て最高な材料と優れた技術で造られて、正規と比べて、品質が無差別です!人気時計コピー、N級ブランドコピーのお求めはぜひ当店へ。弊社は正規品と同等品質のブランドコピー品を低価でお客様に提供します
    高品質2015シャネル スーパーコピー激安專門店弊社は海外大好評を博くシャネル コピー激安老舗です,2015高品質シャネル バッグ コピー,シャネル 靴 コピー,シャネル 財布 コピー品の品質はよくて、激安の大特価でご提供します。 http://www.bestevance.com/vuitton/index.htm

  45. Felicitaciones , I disfrutar de this !.

  46. Thanks For Sharing. I Really Like This Blog.

  47. Offering Express Tourist And Business Visa Processing Services To Dubai. Information About The Tourist Visa For Residents Of The United Kingdom.

  48. Provide Useful Information About Gujarat Board HSC Result. If You’re Someone Who Is Check HSC 12th Result 2016, Then This Blog Is Perfect For You.

  49. Get all latest update and information about CBSE board 10th and 12th results 2016 online.

  50. Yours is a point of view where real intelligence shines through. Buy a used car wisely!

  51. iDubaivisa Is Providing Dubai Tourist Visa To All Nationalities No Matter What Their Country Of Residence Is. We Offer Visa In Various Categories Likes Tourist, Transit And Business.

  52. Greetings I am so glad I found your weblog, I really found you by mistake, while I was browsing on Askjeeve for something else, Anyways I am here now and would just like to say thanks for a tremendous post and a all round thrilling blog (I also love the theme/design), I don’t have time to look over it all at the moment but I have saved it and also added in your RSS feeds, so when I have time I will be back to read a great deal more, Please do keep up the awesome job.

  53. I think your website was much helpful to us. if you keep going this good job I’ll come back at ur blog.

  54. Am new to blogging. So would like to know more about blogs..

  55. For me, the advantages of making my very own bouquet really have been the fee,
    it was SO MUCH cheaper than buying them prepared made.

  56. Si tiene cualquier tipo de problema con su electrodoméstico, tan solo llámenos, nuestros operadores y nuestros técnicos se encargarán de todo para que usted no pierda su valioso tiempo en preocupaciones, porque nosotros nos preocupamos por usted, porque nosotros le arreglamos su electrodoméstico de inmediato, porque nosotros no cobramos desplazamiento, porque nosotros pensamos en cada cliente que solicita nuestro servicio tecnico de frigorificos.

  57. Recuerde que nuestro Servicio Tecnico Bosch en Cerdanyola del Valles ofrece mantenimientos, reparaciones y todo lo relacionado al cuidado de sus electrodomésticos. Los técnicos de servicio llegan a su domicilio con los repuestos originales para la reparación y aumentar la posibilidad de la reparar su aparato en una sola visita. Una marca líder como Bosch siempre ha de contar con una asistencia técnica de primerísima calidad. Para contactar con el servicio oficial al cliente Bosch debes llamar al 902 245 255 ó al 976 305 713.

  58. Tabletki wczesno poronne owo najlepszy dość dobry powikłanie zaś pozbycie się niechcianej ciąży w celu figur, które nie pożądają dopełniać aborcji chirurgicznej. Nie everyman może zgodzić się se na rozczłonkowywanie brzemienności w taki postępowanie, tym bardziej, iż w własnym kraju mieszczący się owo nieprawnego natomiast notorycznie łączy się z koniecznością poszukiwania takiej dyspozycja w środku ścianą, co niezbicie nastręcza nieolbrzymich nakładów nieskarbowych. Skrobanka farmakologiczna mieszczący się zaś tania, pewna a bez trudu dostępna.

  59. Pese a la abundancia de referencias bibliográficas, desde la consolidación de las redes sociales, el interés por el hipertexto ha sido desplazado por otros fenómenos como la participación en comunidades online y la escritura en blogs y wikis, tal y como pone en evidencia la publicación en 2006 de dos títulos como La blogosfera hispana: pioneros de la cultura digital, a cargo José M. Cerezo, Pangea.

  60. Seriously I love American Girls. It’s the accent that does it for me!

  61. hi i in Indonesia, indeed conversation you give really helpful for me. thank you very much and Greetings. 🙂

  62. http://agariomoddedserver.com

    Melek şimdi seni bana yazmış

    http://agariomoddedserver.com

  63. Willy William

    Pitbull – International Love ft. Chris Brown

    http://bestagario.net

  64. If You How To To ?

    http://www.zafer2.com

  65. Haydi şimdi bütün eller havaya artık girdik hepimizde havaya

    http://agarprivateserver.com

  66. thanks for posting such a great article

  67. AronChupa – I’m an Albatraoz | OFFICIAL VIDEO

  68. Provide Useful Information About Gujarat Board HSC Result. Great Post!
    http://pusatgrosirbonekalengkap.blogspot.co.id

  69. You are here: Home > The Docket | Jan. 27, 2015
    The Docket | Jan. 27, 2015

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *