David Pizarro

Psychologist, Disgust researcher
David Pizarro is a psychologist interested in how certain emotions (disgust, fear, anger) affect our moral judgment.

Why you should listen

It's common knowledge that our emotions can have a strong effect on our behavior and judgment. But why would an emotion like disgust, evolutionarily developed to protect us from poisons and other dangerous substances, have any influence on our political leanings today? David Pizarro, associate professor at Cornell University, is studying this surprising phenomenon: Sensitivity to disgusting sensations (like a photo of feces, or being reminded that germs are everywhere) correlates to moral and political conservatism. In his studies he has demonstrated that exposing people to an unpleasant odor can increase negative feelings toward homosexual men.

David Pizarro’s TED talks

David Pizarro on the TED Blog

Quotes from David Pizarro

[Disgust] works through association. … This makes it very useful as a strategy if you want to convince somebody that an object or an individual or an entire social group is disgusting.
David Pizarro
TEDxEast • 537K views Oct 2012
Informative, Fascinating