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By Michael Price 2018-1-05
陈明 编译

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The lower your social class, the ‘wiser’ you are, suggests new study
By Michael Price
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x8Z@9}p+bNK0Growing up working class gives people social skills that help broaden their perspective during conflicts.

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e]ahh q/u;l0There’s an apparent paradox in modern life: Society as a whole is getting smarter, yet we aren’t any closer to figuring out how to all get along. “How is it possible that we have just as many, if not more, conflicts as before?” asks social psychologist Igor Grossmann at the University of Waterloo in Canada.心理学空间 }#G8DR#`}|M8C

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现代生活中有一个明显的悖论:整个社会变得越来越聪明,但我们依然没有找到和睦相处的方法。加拿大滑铁卢大学的社会心理学家伊格尔·格罗斯曼(Igor Grossmann)说:“我们的冲突怎么可能和以前一样多呢?可能更多。”


*rXl7N*y7Z:a8H*|0The answer is that raw intelligence doesn’t reduce conflict, he asserts. Wisdom does. Such wisdom—in effect, the ability to take the perspectives of others into account and aim for compromise—comes much more naturally to those who grow up poor or working class, according to a new study by Grossman and colleagues.


他的观点是,天生的智力(intelligence)不会减少冲突。智慧(Wisdom)可以。格罗斯曼和同事最新的一项研究表明,如此的智慧其实是将他人的观点考虑进去,并达成妥协目标的能力。贫穷或工人阶级中长大的人,在这些能力上显得更为自然。心理学空间'v-D3T/y v+N2f;kEB

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1~9Y2\'H m$bB(i PI0“This work represents the cutting edge in wisdom research,” says Eranda Jayawickreme, a social psychologist at Wake Forest University in Winston-Salem, North Carolina.心理学空间J1@&Y cD9i7X


北卡罗莱纳州温斯顿-塞勒姆维克森林大学的社会心理学家埃兰达·贾亚维克雷姆(Eranda Jayawickreme)说:“这项工作占据了智慧研究的前沿”。

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9oK]V{-Wm ~0To conduct the study, Grossmann and his graduate student Justin Brienza embarked on a two-part experiment. First, they asked 2145 people throughout the United States to take an online survey. Participants were asked to remember a recent conflict they had with someone, such as an argument with a spouse or a fight with a friend. They then answered 20 questions applicable to that or any conflict, including: “Did you ever consider a third-party perspective?” “How much did you try to understand the other person’s viewpoint?” and “Did you consider that you might be wrong?”心理学空间ir)~*Dsa5HM

r?_7fG:P)o:t0为了进行这项研究,格罗斯曼和他的研究生贾斯汀·布里恩扎(Justin Brienza)开始了两部分的实验。首先,他们在美国向2145人进行在线调查。要求参与者回忆最近和别人发生的冲突,比如和配偶的争吵,或者和朋友的打架。然后,他们回答了20个适用于这一问题或任何冲突的问题,包括:你是否考虑过第三方的观点?你试图理解对方观点的程度有多少?你认为你错了吗?心理学空间 WIN7M!zu

9A*a4[xZu@p7ua Ez0Grossmann and Brienza crunched the data and assigned the participants both a “wise reasoning” score based on the conflict answers and a “social class” score, then plotted the two scores against one another. They found that people with the lowest social class scores—those with less income, less education, and more worries about money—scored about twice as high on the wise reasoning scale as those in the highest social class. The income and education levels ranged from working class to upper middle class; neither the very wealthy nor the very poor were well represented in the study.心理学空间9GG ^J6R H


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In the second part of the experiment, the duo recruited 200 people in and around Ann Arbor, Michigan, to take a standard IQ test and read three letters to the Dear Abby advice column. One letter, for example, asked about choosing sides in an argument between mutual friends. Each participant then discussed with an interviewer how they thought the situations outlined in the letters would play out. A panel of judges scored their responses according to various measures of wise reasoning. In the example above, thinking about how an outsider might view the conflict would earn points toward wisdom, whereas relying only on one’s own perspective would not.



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As with the first part of the experiment, those in lower social classes consistently had higher wise-reasoning scores than those in higher social classes, the researchers reported today in the Proceedings of the Royal Society B. IQ scores, however, weren’t associated one way or another with wise reasoning.

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The findings make sense, Jayawickreme says, as people who grow up in a working-class environment have to rely on shared, communal resources more than people in the middle class, and therefore hone social techniques that smooth out conflicts with their peers. Those in the middle class, in contrast, tend to focus on education, which improves their IQ scores, but they don’t put nearly as much effort into conflict resolution skills, Grossmann says.心理学空间9V G)_2j8E B6v(pJ

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oTs;Lr W@0If you want to foster wise reasoning in yourself, Grossmann advises, try to use third-person language when thinking about conflicts. Mentally address both yourself and your conflict partner by name, for example, as it forces you to see the situation as others would see it. And seek out situations where your own experiences and expectations aren’t in the spotlight, such as by attending a multicultural movie festival or by volunteering at a homeless shelter.心理学空间%W+C;Qy)b6G

.\%~8x!q yX0“如果你想培养自己明智的推理能力,”Grossmann建议,“在思考冲突时,尽量使用第三人称的语言。”举例来说,在心理上称呼你自己和你冲突伙伴的名字,因为这会迫使你像对方一样看到别人的情况。并找出那些你自己的经验和期望不被看见时的情景,比如参加一个多元文化的电影节或在无家可归者收容所做义工。心理学空间7N+B,h0Y|(j$O:@$v

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Eventually, Grossman wants to expand his study of wisdom to people at the extremes of social class. “I would not be surprised if the result is even more pronounced in the extremely wealthy, but we don’t have the data to speak to it yet,” he says. “I would love to interview Donald Trump.”心理学空间;p w#z1rz*W8?%p

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7e8WmC3|s3A0Posted in: Brain & Behavior发表于《大脑与行为》

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doi:10.1126/science.aar8218心理学空间U v kQ%J$_$L7RB&E


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