The Latest

Rumors on Fire: Illegal Immigrants and the Arizona Blaze

Disasters provide an opportunity for rumors to appear and flourish. Whether earthquake, flood, or fire, people look to find those responsible, searching for villains. In the case of the massive wildfire in Arizona, many place blame on illegal immigrants who, it is claimed, set the blazes to escape from border control agents. What lessons should we draw from such rumors?

The 3 Biggest Myths About Motivation That Won’t Go Away

People can be remarkably wrong about why they, and everyone else, do the things that they do. And some of those people turn out to be motivational speakers and authors.

Getting to the Bottom of Online Sex

It's fine to judge Anthony Weiner. But if you want to understand the psychology of men drawn to online sex, you have to understand that such outlets provide very particular disconfirming conditions for the anxieties that plague men.

Facebook Users: More Friends, Closer Friends

A new study finds that using Facebook makes for more friends, better friends, more trust, and better citizenship.

The Scientific Atheism Fallacy: How Science Declares that God Is Dead, But Can't Prove It

A scientist has to be an atheist; that seems to be the pervading popular wisdom these days. Yahoos, snake handlers and Bible freaks are "true believers," but sober men and women of science can't possibly believe in such fairy tales.

Books: Women, Their Names, and the Stories They Tell

In writing about their names, women reveal what is most important about their sense of identity. They offer us new ways of thinking about the self--new psychological and spiritual insights drawn from ancient traditions, different religions, cultures, races, and age groups.

Are you disappointed in Obama?

By Donna Barstow on June 17, 2011 in Ink Blots Cartoons
Obama tries to hide his true feelings, but we're family now.

Thinking More Clearly About Obesity (And Stigma)

I asked a colleague what's wrong with this question: "Is obesity a handicap or a lifestyle choice?" And why calling obesity a disease is a problem.

Bipolar Dad

By Jenny Lind Schmitt on June 17, 2011 in Lifestyle Design
But even in the pockmarked moonscape of recovery, there are remnants of beautiful things, and it would be remiss to ignore them.

Shining a Light on Conflicts of Values

We should be loyal to our families and communities, but we should also be concerned about global poverty and the plight of people we may never meet. How can we reconcile these two moral convictions? Maybe a certain emerald superhero and his interstellar comrades can help...

Sabbaticals for Singles?

By Bella DePaulo Ph.D. on June 17, 2011 in Living Single
An employment lawyer makes the case that if parents are offered maternity/paternity leave, then singles with no children should be able to take a leave to pursue goals meaningful to them.

Mislabeling in the Classroom: Distinguish the Differences of ADHD, Anxiety, and Giftedness

By Jenny C. Yip Psy.D. on June 17, 2011 in The OCD Monster
Julie's parents and teachers are worried. She is in the 4th grade and falling behind in her studies. Although she has a complex vocabulary and demonstrates a high level of general knowledge, she is not performing to her ability in the classroom.

Twenty Things Grown-Ups Know (Or Should Know)

Truth No. 14. What seems like an expression of pleasure might not always be exactly that; remember that cats purr even when they are nervous.

Truth No. 19. Just because you are good at something does not mean you have to do it.

Sex & the High Octane Woman

While sex and sexuality may be a challenging minefield to navigate for some powerful and successful women, others have no issues at all with sex and their sexuality ... if only they had time for it!

Don’t Blame the Politicians

When we feel disappointment, politicians are convenient targets for blame. Of course I want everyone to reach their dreams, but the government can't be in the "make-a-wish" business.

Musical Thrills and Chills

People who are strongly affected by music sometimes claim that it gives them chills down their spine and makes their hair stand on end. (The technical term is “piloerection”.) When we are effected in this way by music, art, or by the grandeur of nature, what exactly is going on? Can some kind of evolutionary explanation help us make sense of the experience?

In Praise of Esther Thelen

By Anne Fausto Sterling on June 16, 2011 in Sexing the Body
If there were a Pantheon of developmental psychologists, scientists who changed the way we study and understand human development, Esther Thelen (1941-2004) would take her her place there, alongside the likes of Harry F. Harlow, Mary Ainsworth, John Bowlby, Leta Stetter Hollingworth and many others.

6 Ways the British Do It Better

By Susan K Perry Ph.D. on June 16, 2011 in Creating in Flow
British TV mysteries are a cool way to get the frisson of foreign travel without having to pack. Here are 6 reasons why so many of them are terrific...

Getting Messed Up to Hook Up: The Role of Alcohol in College Students' 'Casual' Sexual Encounters

By Suzanne Zalewski on June 16, 2011 in Partying 101
The college years are associated with the greatest increase in heavy drinking behavior and the highest number of sexual partners. Is it simply something about being young that makes coeds indiscriminate in their selections of beverages and bedroom activities? Or might there be a more complicated psychological explanation behind the co-occurrence of drinking and sex?