Behavioral and Brain Sciences

Open Peer Commentary

Self-deception, lying, and the ability to deceive

Aldert Vrija1

a1 Psychology Department, University of Portsmouth, Portsmouth PO1 2DY, United Kingdom. Aldert.Vrij@port.ac.uk http://www.port.ac.uk/departments/academic/psychology/staff/title,50475,en.html

Abstract

Von Hippel & Trivers (VH&T) argue that people become effective liars through self-deception. It can be said, however, that people who believe their own stories are not lying. VH&T also argue that people are quite good lie detectors, but they provide no evidence for this, and the available literature contradicts their claim. Their reasons to negate this evidence are unconvincing.

(Online publication February 03 2011)

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    The evolution and psychology of self-deception William von Hippel and Robert Trivers School of Psychology, University of Queensland, St Lucia, QLD 4072, Australia. billvh@psy.uq.edu.au http://www.psy.uq.edu.au/directory/index.html?id=1159; Department of Anthropology, Rutgers University, New Brunswick, NJ 08901. trivers@rci.rutgers.edu http://anthro.rutgers.edu/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=102&Itemid=136
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