When is it good to believe bad things?

Joshua M. Ackerman, Jenessa R. Shapiro, Jon K. Maner

Research output: Contribution to journalComment/debatepeer-review

4 Scopus citations


Positive and negative misbeliefs both may have evolved to serve important adaptive functions. Here, we focus on the role of negative misbeliefs in promoting adaptive outcomes within the contexts of romantic relationships and intergroup interactions. Believing bad things can paradoxically encourage romantic fidelity, personal safety, competitive success, and group solidarity, among other positive outcomes.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)510-511
Number of pages2
JournalBehavioral and Brain Sciences
Issue number6
StatePublished - Dec 2009

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neuropsychology and Physiological Psychology
  • Physiology
  • Behavioral Neuroscience


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