Not so hypocritical after all - How we change our minds without noticing
Neil Levy (Oxford University, Macquarie University)

October 21, 2019, 6:00pm - 7:30pm
Philosophy Programme, Murdoch University

Hill Lecture Theatre
90 South St
Murdoch 6150

This will be an accessible event, including organized related activities


  • College of Arts, Business, Law, and Social Sciences


Murdoch University



We all apt to alter our beliefs and even our principles to suit the prevailing winds. Examples abound in public life, like the politicians who yesterday campaigned on the budget emergency represented by a deficit only to be indifferent to an even larger deficit once in office, but we are all subject to similar reversals. We often accuse one another of hypocrisy when these kinds of reversals occur. Sometimes the accusation is justified. In this lecture, Prof Levy will argue that in many such cases, we don’t act hypocritically, even if we have not changed our minds in response to new evidence. Marshalling evidence from psychology and evolutionary theory, he will suggest that we are designed to update our beliefs in response to social signals: as these signals change, we change our minds, often without even noticing.

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