Reading list

First author
Representative passage
Johnson Communication and Attitude Change: Causes, Processes, and Effects Scientific review Book chapter ”The handbook of attitudes” 2005
Järnefelt The divided mind of a disbeliever: Intuitive beliefs about nature as purposefully created among different groups of non-religious adults. Scientific article Cognition (Scientific Journal) 2015 >
Pynchon Is It O.K. To Be A Luddite? Essay New York Times 1984 "We are all supposed to keep tranquil and allow it to go on, even though, because of the data revolution, it becomes every day less possible to fool any of the people any of the time. If our world survives, the next great challenge to watch out for will come – you heard it here first – when the curves of research and development in artificial intelligence, molecular biology and robotics all converge. Oboy. It will be amazing and unpredictable, and even the biggest of brass, let us devoutly hope, are going to be caught flat-footed. It is certainly something for all good Luddites to look forward to if, God willing, we should live so long."

Subjects to learn more about

Cognitive Dissonance

“In the field of psychology, cognitive dissonance is the mental discomfort (psychological stress) experienced by a person who simultaneously holds two or more contradictory beliefs, ideas, or values.”

Nudge theory

“Nudge is a concept in behavioral science, political theory, and economics which proposes positive reinforcement and indirect suggestions as ways to influence the behavior and decision making of groups or individuals.”


“If you want to turn your backs on the benefits of industrialization, go hungry and see most of your children die in infancy; you are free to make that choice. I respect you for the strength of your aesthetic revulsion (—) But I don’t respect you in the slightest if, even passively, you try to impose the same choice on others who are not free to choose.”
C.P. Snow (1905—80), British physicist & writer

“The mind of a bigot to the pupil of the eye; the more light you pour on it, the more it contracts.”
Oliver Wendell Holmes, Sr., poet, novelist, essayist, and physician (29 Aug 1809-1894)

“Debating creationists on the topic of evolution is rather like trying to play chess with a pigeon; it knocks the pieces over, craps on the board, and flies back to its flock to claim victory.”
Scott D. Weitzenhoffer (From an book review)