July 21, 2019

Grooving: On Cognitive Dissonance

We met up with Kathleen Vohs, PhD at our Behavioral Grooves Meetup in Minneapolis on the evening that her op-ed article appeared in the Washington Post on July 18, 2019. She had been asked by the newspaper to write a piece explaining how supporters of President Donald Trump could continue backing him in light of his, “send them back” comment in a tweet.

The tweet referred to 4 first-term congresswomen of color. All of them are US citizens and only one of them was born outside the United States: Representative Ilhan Omar from Minnesota. Representative Omar is from Kurt and Tim’s district and we were motivated by the situation to groove on the cognitive dissonance that Dr. Vohs wrote about.

In this short grooving session, we talk about politics, politicians and cognitive dissonance. We also explore the age-old philosophical question about whether or not a piece of art can be viewed (and appreciated) without the context of the artist.


Kathleen Vohs, “The psychological phenomenon that blinds Trump supporters to his racism,” https://www.washingtonpost.com/outlook/the-psychological-phenomenon-that-blinds-trump-supporters-to-his-racism/2019/07/18/29789344-a8ac-11e9-ac16-90dd7e5716bc_story.html?utm_term=.3cd14b5c4d4b

Kathleen Vohs, PhD: https://carlsonschool.umn.edu/faculty/kathleen-vohs

Leon Festinger, PhD: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Leon_Festinger

Cognitive Dissonance: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cognitive_dissonance

Picasso: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pablo_Picasso

Kurt Nelson: @motivationguru and https://www.linkedin.com/in/kurtwnelson/

Tim Houlihan: @THoulihan and https://www.linkedin.com/in/tim-houlihan-b-e/

Check out the Behavioral Grooves website: https://behavioralgrooves.com/

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