Bodily, Kent D. (2017) Reductionism and accounts of cognitive dissonance. Animal Sentience 12(10)
Thomas R. Zentall, Cognitive dissonance or contrast?
Zentall (2016) proposed within-trial contrast as an alternative account of cognitive dissonance with greater parsimony and generalizability between human and nonhuman species. This commentary describes forms of reductionism, categorizes several competing accounts of cognitive dissonance phenomena, and addresses the strengths and weaknesses according to the reductionist form each account takes. A focus on functional relations may make explanation more parsimonious while bridging theoretical divides between human and nonhuman research programs.