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Uncommon Knowledge

What betrays a poker face: your arms

And other surprising insights from the social sciences

Storms make environmentalists

How do you feel about climate change? It might depend on the last time you faced some nasty weather. Researchers at Rutgers University tested students before and after the hurricanes (Irene and Sandy) that recently struck New Jersey. Although the students reported being similarly liberal and reported similar support for a hypothetical green candidate before and after the storms, their automatic associations—measured by how readily the students associated good or bad words with each candidate—reversed, favoring the green candidate and becoming correlated with voting and environmental attitudes only after the storms.

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