Memory

Memory makes us. If we couldn't recall the who, what, where, and when of our everyday lives, we would never be able to manage. We mull over ideas in the present with our short-term (or working) memory, while we store past events and learned meanings in our long-term (episodic or semantic) memory.

Bias

A bias is a tendency. Most biases—like preferring to eat food instead of paper clips, or assuming someone on fire should be put out—are helpful. But cognitive shortcuts can cause problems when we're not aware of them and we apply them inappropriately, leading to rash decisions or discriminatory practices (based on, say, racism and sexism).

Politics

The world of politics reflects human nature in all its rational and irrational glory. How we govern ourselves and make decisions, use and often abuse power, reflect our deepest fears at least as much as our aspirations and ideals.