research articles

Conspiracist and paranormal beliefs: A typology of non-reductive ideation




Science mistrust, conspiracy theories, conspiracist ideation, paranormal, schizotypy, paranoia


Non-reductive ideation is characterized by a tendency to attribute causality to non-physical powers and mysterious forms of intelligent agency such as conspiracist ideation, belief in specific conspiracy theories, and belief in the paranormal. Scholars have identified numerous individual correlates of non-reductive ideation but do not examine shared patterns across multiple predictors to determine subtypes of individuals with different psychological profiles. We address this gap by considering a large set of predictors in a diverse cross-section of the US public (N=792) to uncover latent subtypes of individuals with varying tendencies toward non-reductive ideation. Schizotypal and neurotic tendencies were the strongest predictors of non-reductive ideation, while sociopolitical identity (e.g., political ideology) contributed little explanatory power. We find five distinct latent classes distinguished by: schizotypal and paranoid ideation, alienated skepticism toward people/society, and a negative sense of self. We discuss these results in light of previous findings and suggest directions for future research.





research articles