Hair Parts in Congress

One of the more striking examples of how hair parts are affecting our world is to look at the way the US Congress is differentiated by hair parting.  Politics aside, because the side parts are on both sides of the aisle, the Hair Part Theory would say that the prevalance of side parts (more than 80%) is a contributor to the polarization within our current political situation.   Those with side parts tend to be more out of balance than usual, because one side of the brain is always being emphasized at the expense of the other.

here is a graphic illustration of the way it breaks down in the 110th congress (includes other groupings too):

The percentages are also not representative of the general population.  The following are averages of various samples taken over the last 10 years:

General Population* 110th Congress 105th Congress Left Part 40% 54% 56% Right Part 3% 18% 17% Center part 50% 20% 26% (includes bald) Bald ** 35% 9% NA Notes:
* General Population averages are based on long term observation of multiple population groups – exact total figures are hard to quantify since there is a high dependence on demographics.
** Baldness at a later age in much more prevalent in the population and includes men who parted on either side prior to losing their hair
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Right part alert – Miller Lite Commercials – Man up

Once again, the commercial industry uses the right hair part to help audiences decide that their character is not so “manly”.

so far out of the few that have aired, two have the main man who needs to “man-up “:

1st is the “im crying because you are leaving guy, who also gets the less than optimal middle seat on the plane:

2nd is the guy who pulls up their shirt at a mardi gras celebration:

(pics coming)

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Hair Parts in Hugo Movie

The main character, Hugo, is a young boy who in his innocent times parts his hair on the right, whereas when hes thrust on his own devices in the main Train station, he parts on the left. another example of the movies using the instant feedback of the hair part to convey a character type

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Cochran on Survivor

Was there ever any more powerful example of the way the right part on the wrong person can lead to a personality that is almost completely disliked by the peer group.

Interesting to see what he looks like flipped with a left part…(see 2nd set of pics below)

Even more interesting is how Cochran became highly successful in the end, and as is typical of the right hair part, his success is highly unique to him.  Its one of the most confounding aspects of the right hair part on men – it is completely a double edged sword and cuts both ways.  Often however the cuts are more negative than positive.

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Hair Part Theory Original Paper (1999)

The Hair Part Theory: Summary

What Is Your Hair Part Saying About You?

The Effects of Hair Parting on Social Appraisal and Personal Development

By Catherine Walter and John Walter

HairPartTheory(c)2001TMCInc PDF version – Complete data included:

Surprisingly, a hair part has a crucial impact on interpersonal relationships by affecting immediate character appraisal, perceived personality traits, self-perception and self-development!

The Hair Part Theory was developed by a brother-sister team trained, respectively, in nuclear physics and cultural anthropology. Their revolutionary theory is now being made available to the general public, so that all individuals can have more control over automatic and mostly unconscious assessments made of their personalities by others. John and Catherine Walter also produce the True Mirror®, a mirror that does not reverse the viewer’s image and which therefore allows an accurate self-assessment.

A left hair part draws unconscious attention to the activities that are controlled by the left hemisphere of the brain, i.e. activities traditionally attributed to masculinity. A right hair part draws unconscious attention to the activities that are controlled by the right hemisphere of the brain, i.e. activities traditionally attributed to femininity.

A man who parts his hair on the right, and who is striving for positive assessment in a traditionally male role is at risk for having difficulties in interpersonal relationships, since he is sending a mixed, subconscious message by emphasizing the activities of the brain traditionally attributed to femininity.

A woman who parts her hair on the left, and who is striving for positive assessment in a traditionally male role (for example, in business or politics) will be taken more seriously than a woman with a right part, who is emphasizing mental processes that are traditionally attributed to femininity.

Use the links below to access the full theory paper, as well as an analysis of
United States Presidents, Vice Presidents, state Governors (in office 9/98), and
the Senators and Representatives of the 105th Congress according to their hair part
choice, with an emphasis on those who part their hair on the right.
Additionally, a list of famous men who wear a right part is included,
since these men illustrate some of the surprising ways that a right hair
part affects personality and perception of personality.

PDF version – Complete data

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Famous Reversal Images

On the RadioLab Mirror Mirror page, there is a photo of Lincoln that they used in the live version of the show. There is some discussion about how the strong asymettry of his face is what causes the strong contrast between images, but that if you just see one without the other, both look normal. Well here are some other examples which hopefully will show how different the reverse image really is!

By the way, the big gasp did come from people when it was reversed partially because it was on a huge screen – the effect was much stronger and stranger: Here is a video someone posted of that image swap:

Princess Diana in the only known image with a right part - notice how sultry!

Princess Diana with her usual left part - she's pretty but not so receptive?

George Bush with his normal left part

George Bush reversed - showing a right part...Strange no?

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RadioLab Show!

NPR RadioLab’s Jad Abumrad and Robert Krulwich recently did a fascinating show titled “Desperately Seeking Symmetry”, where they traveled through time and science and culture looking for the signs of symmetry, and in fact found just the opposite.  The full show is being podcast here: 

As part of the show, they interviewed me and the Hair Part Theory – basically covering the way I discovered the concept, the transformation that I experienced, and how i found the effects of right parting on other men was similarly a handicap – Jimmy Carter and Clark Kent are covered.  This part of the full show listed above is the Mirror Mirror Segment – I’m about 1/3 of the way in :

A couple of notes from the show:

   They covered how the True Mirror came into play – the mirror that doesnt reverse your image, and how it finally solved the strangeness of the mirror flip that had bedeviled me after realizing how i had been fooled my whole life.  But the show was about asymmetry – how even when we search for and value symmetry, it’s really hard to find.  Turns out the True Mirror accentuates them a lot, since they are on the opposite side from what you are used to.  Yes, some people (a lot actually), find this very disconcerting, which is the point they made on the show, but so many actually love what they see and embrace the new view because it’s so much more animated and reflective of our true nature.  just a minor wish for that point to be made on an otherwise fantastic show!

The other thing is that they have a picture of Lincoln on the web that if you click it reverses it.  More than a few web comments are saying they don’t see the big difference, enough to have the audience gasp when they saw it…I think it’s because in the live show, the picture was huge – a full movie screen size, and the overall effect of the flip was very striking.  if you can download this small picture to a larger monitor and flip it, it may be more striking

Other pictures are missing that were part of the live show that could help the radio audience…the Clark Kent flip and Jimmy Carter flip.  Both will be posted on this blog shortly.

Finally, one of the biggest things that I discovered when i first saw a true image in a medicine cabinet mirror combination, was that my face “works” there, and it gets very flat and strained backwards.  Turns out that the asymmetry is important for communication – our left may be stronger in expressiveness, but it belongs there.  When you flip the sides, your expressions stop matching what is real and you tend to fall into a stare.  When i show the True Mirror to people, that’s the best experience ever – when they see the light in their eyes when smiling and how it stays there and gets stronger!  This is a fundamental flaw in one of the most common household items  – every person is subjected to this flattening and deadening experience daily – is there any wonder that we all have issues?

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