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The Beauty of Being Wrong with David Bjerklie

Intellectual humility is linked to a long list of potential benefits, personal as well as social.

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Time & Location








About this class:

This is a 6-week virtual class using the Zoom platform.

Sundays: February 19, 26, March 5, 12, 19, 26 - 3-4:30 pm CST

We really don't like how it feels to be wrong. It's uncomfortable, even embarrassing, and it trains a spotlight on our doubts, ignorance, and failures. Being wrong can feel like an identity crisis. No wonder we go to great lengths to deny being wrong in the first place! But why is being wrong so fraught and why does this matter? Many psychologists and philosophers believe that our deep aversion to being wrong blinds us to opportunities to see the world and ourselves in a different light. The degree to which we can recognize that our beliefs might be wrong–call it intellectual humility–can be a superpower if we allow it to be. Intellectual humility is linked to a long list of potential benefits, personal as well as social. But can it be cultivated? How do we measure intellectual humility and what are the factors that encourage it? Are there downsides to being too humble? Surely we don't have to be open-minded about all of our beliefs, do we?

Join us as we explore how we are wrong about what it means to be wrong.

Instructor bio:

David Bjerklie has been a science reporter, writer and editor at TIME Magazine, TIME For Kids, and TIME Books, as well as a freelance contributor to national and international magazines and newspapers. He was a Knight Science Journalism Fellow at M.I.T.; a Rosalynn Carter Mental Health Journalism Fellow; a two-time media grant recipient at the Lindau Nobel Laureate Meetings in Germany; and a National Science Foundation Media Fellow at McMurdo and South Pole Stations in Antarctica.

Humanities North Dakota classes and events are funded in part by the National Endowment for the Humanities.


Any views, findings, conclusions, or recommendations expressed in this {article, book, exhibition, film, program, database, report, Web resource}, do not necessarily represent those of the National Endowment for the Humanities or Humanities North Dakota. However, in an increasingly polarized world, we at Humanities North Dakota believe that being open-minded is necessary to thinking critically and rationally. Therefore our programs and classes reflect our own open-mindedness in the inquiry, seeking, and acquiring of scholars to speak at our events and teach classes for our Public University. To that end, we encourage our participants to join us in stepping outside our comfort zones and considering other perspectives and ideas by being open-minded while attending HND events featuring scholars who hold a variety of opinions, some being opposite of our own held beliefs.

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