Dangerous beliefs, effective signals

Philosophical Psychology 36 (5):969-989 (2023)
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Abstract

Some collective irrationalities, like epistemically and pragmatically reckless Covid skepticism, are especially dangerous. While we normally have incentives to avoid dangerous beliefs, there are cases in which the danger of a belief is valuable. This is not captured by most accounts of motivated reasoning. I argue that Covid skepticism can function as a costly signal (handicap) so as to more effectively communicate social identity and commitment.

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Eric Funkhouser
University of Arkansas, Fayetteville

Citations of this work

Symbolic belief in social cognition.Evan Westra - 2023 - Philosophical Perspectives 37 (1):388-408.

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References found in this work

Echoes of covid misinformation.Neil Levy - 2021 - Philosophical Psychology 36 (5):931-948.
Self-Deception Unmasked.Alfred R. Mele - 2001 - Princeton University Press.
Beliefs as signals: A new function for belief.Eric Funkhouser - 2017 - Philosophical Psychology 30 (6):809-831.
The marketplace of rationalizations.Daniel Williams - 2023 - Economics and Philosophy 39 (1):99-123.

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