Genschow, Oliver, Rigoni, Davide and Brass, Marcel (2019). The hand of God or the hand of Maradona? Believing in free will increases perceived intentionality of others' behavior. Conscious. Cogn., 70. S. 80 - 88. SAN DIEGO: ACADEMIC PRESS INC ELSEVIER SCIENCE. ISSN 1090-2376

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Abstract

The question of whether free will actually exists has been debated in philosophy for centuries. However, how belief in free will shapes the perception of our social environment still remains open. Here we investigate whether belief in free will affects how much intentionality we attribute to other people. Study 1a and 1b demonstrate a weak positive relation between the strength of belief in free will and the perceived intentionality of soccer players committing handball. This pattern even holds for behavior that is objectively not intentional (i.e., when the player touches the ball accidentally). Going one step further, in Study 2 we find a weak correlation between belief in free will and perceiving intentions in very abstract geometrical shapes. These findings suggest that whether individuals believe in free will or not changes the way they interpret others' behavior, which may have important societal consequences.

Item Type: Journal Article
Creators:
CreatorsEmailORCIDORCID Put Code
Genschow, OliverUNSPECIFIEDUNSPECIFIEDUNSPECIFIED
Rigoni, DavideUNSPECIFIEDUNSPECIFIEDUNSPECIFIED
Brass, MarcelUNSPECIFIEDUNSPECIFIEDUNSPECIFIED
URN: urn:nbn:de:hbz:38-152239
DOI: 10.1016/j.concog.2019.02.004
Journal or Publication Title: Conscious. Cogn.
Volume: 70
Page Range: S. 80 - 88
Date: 2019
Publisher: ACADEMIC PRESS INC ELSEVIER SCIENCE
Place of Publication: SAN DIEGO
ISSN: 1090-2376
Language: English
Faculty: Unspecified
Divisions: Unspecified
Subjects: no entry
Uncontrolled Keywords:
KeywordsLanguage
WEAKENING BELIEF; DISBELIEF; PREDICTS; AGENCY; TIMEMultiple languages
Psychology, ExperimentalMultiple languages
Refereed: Yes
URI: http://kups.ub.uni-koeln.de/id/eprint/15223

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