Take a good look at the picture below. Do you see a circle? Or not a circle?
It turns out that your answer to this question will likely predict where you fall on the political spectrum – liberal, conservative, or somewhere in the middle.
Here goes: if you’re liberal-minded, you likely shrugged and said “sure, I’d call that a circle.”
It also means that you’re more likely to support the legalization of cannabis, gay marriage, and support government-funded programs like welfare.
If you squinted, then frowned and shook your head, thinking “that has too many squiggly lines to be a circle,” then it’s likely that you see the world through a more conservative lens.
The test works on other shapes, too, fyi – as long as they’re not “perfect.” What it measures is our willingness to accept something that’s outside the “norm” as acceptable: ie, if you’re more tolerant of the difference between the shape in the picture and a circle, you’re more likely to accept deviance in society (and others). If you’re a stricter judge of geometry, you’ll view society (and others) through a similar lens.
Psychologists think that it boils down to what they call a negativity bias:
Our position on the political spectrum – right, left, or centrist – could be down to a deep-seated psychological bias in the way people think about the world…This finding, combined with other research from around the world, suggests our so-called ‘negativity bias’ – an automatic orientation towards negative aspects of our environments – may be at the heart of our place on the political spectrum.
What do you think? Is it a circle? Is it not? Does it matter?
I wanted to dismiss this whole thing as fluff, but the truth is that it was right. At least about me.
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