We can experience being wrong about some ideas as an attack upon our very selves, or our tribal identity. This can lead to motivated reasoning which causes a reinforcement of beliefs, despite disconfirming evidence. Recent research shows that the backfire effect certainly doesn’t happen all the time. Most people will accept a correction relating to specific facts, however the backfire effect may reinforce a related or ‘parent’ belief as people attempt to reconcile a new narrative in their understanding.
“It ain’t what you don’t know that gets you into trouble. It’s what you know for sure that just ain’t so.” – Mark Twain