In 2010, a trio of psychologists introduced the acronym WEIRD. It captures the idea that people in Western, Educated, Industrialized, Rich, Democratic societies are oddballs compared to the rest of humanity (photo).

WEIRD: Adventures of an Acronym

Ten years ago, an acronym was born. There was nothing particularly unusual about the circumstances surrounding its birth. It first appeared in the journal Behavioral and Brain Sciences, in an article by three psychologists — Joseph Henrich, Steven Heine, and Ara Norenzayan.

Now, acronyms abound in academic writing. Most are met with groans and then are quickly forgotten. But those of us who witnessed the…

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