In contrast to work examining motivational and affective biases, we examined potential cognitive biases, in the shape of dichotomous thinking (i.e., a tendency to see the world as black or white), linked to the Dark Triad traits. In Study 1 (N = 712), Japanese participants revealed that the latent variance—the ostensible “adaptive” competent of the Dark Triad traits—was linked to a tendency to see the world as black or white. In Study 2 (N = 1489), we replicated effects from Study 1 using a multinational sample and structural equation modeling and revealed some moderation by participants’ sex and country in the relationship between the Dark Triad traits and dichotomous thinking. We discuss our results in terms of life history theory, contending black and white thinking might be part of the cognitive adaptations that make the Dark Triad traits function.
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