Research suggests that if you see something depicted often enough in the news or the movies, what was once reprehensible may start to feel safer to imagine, debate, and even justify.
Izzat Jarudi is a health care consultant who holds a PhD in psychology from Yale University and a BS in brain and cognitive science from MIT. He lives in Cambridge, Mass.
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What explains the widespread belief in conspiracy theories? And can it help account for the Boston Marathon suspects’ turn to terrorism? Research in social and cognitive psychology offers some insight.