How Behavioral Science Explains “Woke Backlash” with N. Chloé Nwangwu

Behavioral scientist N. Chloé Nwangwu explains "woke backlash" as a predictable phenomenon based on history and known social dynamics.
How Behavioral Science Explains “Woke Backlash” with N. Chloé Nwangwu
Published July 18, 2023

“Woke backlash” refers to the appropriation of the term “woke” and how pockets of American society are pushing back against the progressive social justice moment.

But why is today’s so-called “woke backlash” happening?

Behavioral science — and a look back at history — help us understand why.

N. Chloé Nwangwu is a behavioral strategist, brand visibility expert, and former international conflict mediator known as “the Brand Scientist.”

Today as the director of NobiWorks, a brand visibility consultancy, Chloé leverages science and strategic branding to help under-recognized brands become impossible to ignore. She’s advised everyone from small businesses to small island nations, and even the first refugee delegation to the United Nations.

In this ranging interview, Dave and N. Chloé cover:

  • How “underrecognized” is a better, more accurate term than “underrepresented” when discussing people of marginalized identities
  • The historical precedent of “woke backlash” and why the group phenomenon of “reactance” occurs
  • The advertising advantage of homogenous audiences — and why companies want to make their audiences and customers more “the same”

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