Waking Up from the Dream of Reason: Rationality in the Real World

René Van Hezewijk

    Research output: Contribution to journalBook/Film/Article reviewAcademic


    For centuries, philosophy and psychology in one way or another identified thought with logic, or logic with thought. Only in recentdecades has it become clear that there is more to thought than logic. Evolutionary psychology has stressed the adaptive function of thought, as of other processes often identified as psychological. Gigerenzer et al. have worked for some years now on a program of research in which thinking isapproached as an adaptive process. According to them, it is misleading to use the complexities of logic, mathematics or statistics as the standards for correct thinking or as a model for thought. On the contrary, thinking is the effective use of simple heuristics. The four volumes discussed in this review essay demonstrate that the approach can be very fruitful in many domains of human reasoning, and can be effective in practical problem solving as well, without having to fall back on the intricacies of logic, statistics, mathematics and other tools of the trade of scientific decision making.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)261-272
    Number of pages12
    JournalTheory & Psychology
    Issue number2
    Publication statusPublished - 1 Apr 2004


    • adaptive thinking
    • decision making
    • evolutionary psychology
    • heuristics
    • risk analysis
    • Gigerenzer


    Dive into the research topics of 'Waking Up from the Dream of Reason: Rationality in the Real World'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

    Cite this