23 October 2009

Situationism in the New York Times

Here's a quote from this op-ed in the NYTimes:
Behavior does not exhibit what the psychologists call “cross-situational stability.”

The psychologists thus tend to gravitate toward a different view of conduct. In this view, people don’t have one permanent thing called character. We each have a multiplicity of tendencies inside, which are activated by this or that context.

I appreciate this piece as a particularly concise explanation of the importance of situationism. It's unfortunate that he paints all of philosophy as dispositionist and inherently based on a priori assumptions, but it's understandable in the context of having to be concise.

Hat Tip to The Frontal Cortex Blog.

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