Does This “Magic Circle” Reveal a Lot About You?

What sorcery is this? Has a mundane drawing been bewitched to reveal our inner selves? Ben Ambridge over at the Guardian brought this peculiar question to our attention. Is this a circle?

political circle

Perhaps? Yes? Definitely not? There’s no wrong answer. According to a recent study published in the Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, your answer surprisingly exposes your political inclinations. Those who agree that it does more or less qualify as a circle tend to demonstrate liberal leanings such as supporting government-assisted programs for the homeless and the unemployed. Meanwhile, those who disagreed that this looked like a circle were prone to display conservative tendencies.

Ben went on to say,

People who are tolerant of deviance from the norm when judging a circle (or triangle, square, rectangle or ellipse) are tolerant of deviant or otherwise marginalized groups in society. In fact, they’re not just tolerant of these groups; they actively want to help them. So if you meet someone new and don’t know how to broach the subject of their political orientation, just show them a ‘circle’.

So it turns out that we Muggles do not need Veritaserum or even (for those nasty enough to use it) the Cruciatus Curse to get others to spill their political associations. Just show them a picture of Harry’s misshapen birthday cake and observe what shape they think it is.


“It’s a circle, Harry.”