True lies: Self-stabilization without self-deception☆

Consciousness and Cognition 19 (3):721-730 (2010)
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Abstract

Self-deception entails apparent conceptual paradoxes and poses the dilemma between two competing needs: the need for stability of the self-concept, on the one hand, and the need to accept reality, on the other. It is argued, first, that conceptual difficulties can be avoided by distinguishing two levels of explanation. Whereas, in a personal language, “the person” deceives him- or her-self, a cognitive approach explains this self-deception by reference to the interplay of cognitive processes of which the person is not aware. Second, the tension between stability and adjustment of the self can be resolved by self-immunization, which maintains the stability of central self-conceptions by adjusting peripheral aspects and their diagnostic value for the central concepts. Processes of self-immunization were investigated in a series of studies operating on both levels of explanation. Implications for psychological explanations of personal phenomena such as self-images and self-insight are discussed

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References found in this work

Is human cognition adaptive?John R. Anderson - 1991 - Behavioral and Brain Sciences 14 (3):471-485.
Replicable unconscious semantic priming.Sean Draine & Anthony G. Greenwald - 1998 - Journal Of Experimental Psychology-General 127 (3):286-303.
Falsification and the methodology of scientific research programmes.Lakatos Imre - 1970 - In Imre Lakatos & Alan Musgrave (eds.), Criticism and the growth of knowledge. Cambridge [Eng.]: Cambridge University Press. pp. 91-195.
Recent work on self-deception.Alfred R. Mele - 1987 - American Philosophical Quarterly 24 (1):1-17.

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