Thursday, January 10, 2008

Here's a good time waste

But the peeps at Harvard probably wouldn't appreciate it being called that.

The site is a series of tests designed to gauge your "implicit associations". Which I think is a Harvard-ish way of saying "prejudice". And beware: "If you are unprepared to encounter interpretations that you might find objectionable, please do not proceed further." Translating from the Ivy-speak, this means: "if you freak out when we call you a bigot, don't say we didn't warn you!"

Mostly kidding, really. I took the "Weapons" test. This test flashes pictures of white males and black males, interspersed with pictures of weapons and innocuous objects. You have to very quickly click one of two options each time they flash on the screen. Purportedly, this measures how closely you associate weapons with black people and harmless objects with white people (or, of course, vice versa).

My result was a "slight" association of weapons with black people. Which would probably give me an opportunity for introspection if the weapons pictured were the kind popularly associated with black people. But they were things like civil war cannons, scimitars, hand grenades, maces, crossbows and the like. The kind of weapons you really wouldn't associate with any particular ethnic group. Also, I'm not sure this says much about my feelings toward black people, since, you know, I actually like weapons. So maybe I'm "slightly" more affinitized toward black people than white people?

But anyway. It was kind of interesting. There are lots of other tests, measuring all manner of doubleplus-ungood-think.

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