Most people are not WEIRD

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To understand human psychology, behavioural scientists must stop doing most of their experiments on Westerners, argue Joseph Henrich, Steven J. Heine and Ara Norenzayan.


  1. Henrich, J., Heine, S. J. & Norenzayan, A. Behav. Brain Sci. doi:10.1017/S0140525X0999152X (2010).
  2. Henrich, J., Heine, S. J. & Norenzayan, A. Behav. Brain Sci. doi:10.1017/S0140525X10000725 (2010).
  3. Arnett, J. Am. Psychol. 63, 602614 (2008).
  4. Henrich, J. et al. Science 327, 14801484 (2010).
  5. Foote, C. L., Goette, L. & Meier, S. Policymaking Insights from Behavioral Economics (Federal Reserve Bank of Boston, 2009).
  6. Ji, L. J., Zhang, Z. Y. & Guo, T. Y. J. Behav. Decis. Making 21, 399413 (2008).

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  1. Joseph Henrich, Steven J. Heine and Ara Norenzayan are in the Department of Psychology, University of British Columbia, Vancouver, British Columbia V6T 1Z4, Canada. Joseph Henrich is also in the Department of Economics.

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  1. Report this comment #11636

    oliver elbs said:

    Great article indeed, because it also shows the extreme WEIRD bias in cognitive neurobiology (especially with regard to pooled, statistically averaged and smoothed fMRI brain maps).
    When you even read the letter by Vittorio Sgaramella on the individual human body being a multicellular conglomerate with NOT IDENTICAL GENOMES in the cells (in this week's issue of "Science", see ), you can even doubt whether there is some "human body", and some "human nature" at all --- or only some extremely diverse individual cells (and bodies) that happen to be MORE OR LESS "similar" (Ludwig Wittgenstein) to each other within some loosely defined population of H. sapiens...
    Hence, weird and stubborn political and sociological concepts, memes, and words (circulating within some "masses" and "the mass media") like "Afroamericans", "Jews", "Americans", etc. only remain to be laughed at... (but alas, only by some very few understanding researchers or map-makers).

  2. Report this comment #68983

    Sarah Rain said:

    People don?t think you?re weird if you believe in a god. Especially if it?s the Christian God. What country do you live in?

    Here in the USA, people are OUTRAGED if you don?t believe in a god. You even get death threats on occasion, on the internet. People like George W Bush think that Atheists shouldn?t be allowed to be citizens .

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