My name is Cody Kommers, and this is my newsletter about travel, psychology, and the science of meaningful experience. I’m a PhD student in social psychology at Oxford. I put out long-form essays every week or two—depending on how long it takes to do the piece to the best of my ability. 

Some weeks, I ask a question about travel and the way we experience the world then look for answers in psychological research. For example, in this piece I ask “Does travel reduce prejudice?” It’s an exploration of the psychological research on intergroup contact theory—and whether going abroad has any affect on the assumptions we make about others.

Other weeks, I tell a story. In “As with a Harvest,” I tell the story of Joseph-Désiré Bitero, a killer who participated in the Rwandan genocide. I look at the accounts of Joseph-Désiré and those around him to try to get an insight into what goes through the mind of a person when they raise a machete against their neighbors.

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