The still face paradigm, the just world fallacy, inequality and the decline of empathy

This is long but by far the best analysis of the horrendously damaging toxicity of neo-liberal strategy to manipulate populations through stigmatising and ‘othering’. People need to know about this in order to resist it.

Politics and Insights

r-wilkinson-spirit-level-lecture-november-2010-10-638

UNICEF’s reports have consistently put the UK at the bottom of the child well-being league table. See also: UNICEF criticises UK’s failure to tackle child inequality as gap grows.

pie-wealthSource: The Equality Trust 

The still face paradigm and inequality

Before Christmas I read an excellent and insightful article by Michael Bader called The Decline of Empathy and the Appeal of Right-Wing Politics, which was about Edward Tronick’s Still Face experiment in part. Tronick is an American developmental psychologist at the University of Massachusetts, Boston. His studies illuminate the importance of trusting relationships and consistent human responses in children’s development and learning.

Tronick’s experimental design was very simple: mothers were asked to play as they usually would with their six-month-old infants. The mothers were then instructed to suddenly blank their face: to make their facial expression flat and neutral – completely “still”  – and to do so for…

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