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Connor Wood, PhD is an expert in the cognitive and evolutionary sciences of ritual. Connor’s interests include the evolutionary and cognitive roles of ritual, the influence of religion on health and self-regulation, and the conservative-liberal spectrum in psychology and religion. He received his PhD in religious studies from Boston University in 2016, with a focus on religion and science. Since then, he’s worked as a postdoc and research associate at the Center for Mind and Culture in Kenmore Square. His research spans disciplines and has led to peer-reviewed articles on many aspects of ritual, including self-regulation, shamanism, and the evolutionary foundations of music. Connor writes a blog, Science On Religion, at Patheos.com, and occasionally writes for the Huffington Post. He also studies the relationship between cognitive style and spirituality at the survey website FaithInDepth.org. He blogs at the religion website Patheos, likes to hike mountains, kayak, and make music. He lives in Arlington with his wife.


Connor was a Sinai and Synapses Fellow from 2013-2015.

Racism and the Professional Class


Who benefits from the policies white progressives are advocating? Are we fighting for racial justice, or for someone else’s justice? Or for no one’s? Until I know, I will be slow to speak and quick to question orthodoxies.

Is Morality About Cooperation?


Morality-as-cooperation is pushing researchers in moral psychology to think more rigorously about the evolutionary background and specific processes that might give rise to moral sentiments.