Why We Wonder Why

first_imgScientific American:Humans are curious creatures, and our curiosity drives a search for explanations. So while this search may fit squarely in the realm of science, it is hardly confined to the pursuits of scientists and intellectuals. Even preschoolers ask why, and indeed may do so to the exasperation of adults. Yet adults seek to understand things, too. They want to know why their partner responded angrily to their request, why the train was late, or why the weather changed so suddenly. By helping us understand our environment, explanations give us some control over our lives. I interviewed psychologist Tania Lombrozo at the University of California at Berkeley to find out more about the types of explanations people want, why we value these, and which types of human reasoning bring us closer to the truth.Read the whole story: Scientific American More of our Members in the Media >last_img