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Jaunty Jargon Recitation: Construal Level

This week’s pick for a chunk of jaunty jargonian text — fun to recite aloud at posh parties and in swanky restaurants — is the abstract of a study just published in the Journal of Consumer Research:

When Does a Higher Construal Level Increase or Decrease Indulgence? Resolving the Myopia versus Hyperopia Puzzle,” Ravi Mehta [pictured here], Rui (Juliet) Zhu, and Joan Meyers-Levy, Journal of Consumer Research, Vol. 41, No. 2 (August 2014), pp. 475-488.

“Existing inquiry on self-control reveals an inconsistency. The mainstream research on myopic behavior suggests that use of a high versus low construal level should lead consumers to exhibit less indulgence. However, more recent work on hyperopia implies the opposite. This article attempts to resolve this discrepancy. In particular, the level at which a consumer construes information (abstract vs. concrete), interacts with his or her self-focus, and both factors jointly determine consumer indulgence level. When the self is not salient, outcomes implied by the myopia literature ensue. But when the self is focal, the opposite outcomes anticipated by the hyperopia literature obtain.”

You might enjoy reciting it aloud now, to whomever happens to be within earshot of you at this moment.

BONUS: From two of the same three co-authors:

Is Noise Always Bad? Exploring the Effects of Ambient Noise on Creative Cognition,” R. Mehta, R. Zhu, A. Cheema, Journal of Consumer Research, vol. 39, 2012, pp. 784-99

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