Thinking, Fast and Slow. 35 Two Selves

Following the schedule of our Reading Calendar

This chapter presents a curious bias. Our memories of past experiences do not correspond exactly to what we actually were experiencing while living them but are essentially focused on the the maximal intensities of pain/pleasure and the final moments of the experience. The total duration is neglected. The result of this is a contradiction between the self reported level of pain/pleasure when currently undergoing the experience and the memory that we have of it afterwards.

And this has a very powerful consequence. Since we will be making future decisions based on our memories of past events (we do not have any other information to resort to), in the case of discrepancies between the “experienced” and the “remembered”, we are going to take erroneous decisions. That is, we will choose options that will provide less pleasure/more pain than the alternatives. Take that, homo economicous!

Isn’t it funny?

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