The short and the tall of power

Powerful people feel taller than they are. That's the finding of the latest research from Washington University.

Richard Farmer

Crikey political commentator

Glenn Milne and Bob Hawke explained. Powerful people feel taller than they are. That's the finding of the latest research from Jack A. Goncalo of Cornell University and Michelle M. Duguid of Washington University published in Psychological Science, a journal of the Association for Psychological Science.

The two authors were prompted to make enquiries when, after the huge 2010 oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico, the chairman of BP referred to the victims of the spill as the "small people." He explained it as awkward word choice by a non-native speaker of English, but the academics wondered if there was something real behind it. In their study, they found that people who feel powerful tend to overestimate their own height -- they feel physically larger than they actually are.

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2 comments

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2 thoughts on “The short and the tall of power

  1. zut alors

    Not that I would ever encourage anyone to lay a glove on the venerable founder of Crikey but it did my heart good to see the still of Glenn Milne in his best debate mode. Surely one of the gutter press’s finest hours.

  2. klewso

    Milne and Hawke – “Hair by Grandpa Munster”, too?
    We know Milne’s bats for a start.

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