Personality Psychology

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  • Format: Hardcover
  • Copyright: 2001-09-01
  • Publisher: McGraw Hill (Tx)
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Table of Contents

A Dance to the Music of the Century: Changing Fashions in 20th-Century Psychiatry
discusses the history and theories that have shaped psychological and psychiatric thinking over the last century
He speculates on where we are headed and which theorists will continue to have an impact on our philosophy and psychological treatments
Causes and Correlations, Massimo Pigliucci, Skeptical Inquirer , January/February 2003
This article reminds the reader to think critically about science
Too many phenomena, such as ESP (extra-sensory perception), are explained post hoc
Few lay people understand the difference between correlation and causation
The author reviews these two concepts and also explains control, experimentation, and statistical inference
When Methods Matter: Qualitative Research Issues in Psychology
Educational Review , Spring 2000 Author
contends that qualitative research methods divulge results that are as rich and revealing about humans as are experiments
Rogers cites the work of several prominent psychologists to support her contention
Right Reasoning
and the Scientific Method
ETC: A Review of General Semantics , Summer 2002
favorably compares the convictions of
Peirce-that scientific investigation is the best method to analyze claims, assertions, ideas, and beliefs
According to Peirce's four methods of 'fixing belief,' people form beliefs using tenacity, authority, a prior knowledge, and scientific investigation
Taylor reviews the limitations of the first three methods and the details of why the scientific method is the right choice
Theories of Personality
The Biological Perspective
Nature vs
Nurture: Two Brothers With Schizophrenia
Perspectives in Psychiatric Care , July/September 2001
The case of two brothers with schizophrenia is presented
Each brother was affected by various but sometimes different causal factors, leading the authors to discuss various implications for the nature/nurture controversy
The Blank Slate
Discover , October 2002
A few scientists come down heavily on the genetic explanation for human nature
That is, scientists such as Steven Pinker discredit the notion that parents mold their children
Instead, our inherited background plays a far greater role
Alas Poor Evolutionary Psychology: Unfairly Accused, Unjustly Condemned
Evolutionary psychology is psychology based on Darwinian principles, such as natural selection and survival of the fittest
Kurzban reviews the criticisms of evolutionary psychology as well as attempts to correct misconceptions
The Mutable Brain, Marguerite Holloway, Scientific American , September 2003 Can the brain change after we are born?
Is surgery or injury the only way to modify this vital organ?
The answer appears to be that different experiences can indeed alter the brain, according to this article
A certain behavior, a particular mental exercise, or some event can transform the brain as revealed in imaging studies
Fear and Trembling in the Amygdala, Lura Helmuth, Science , April 25, 2003
The brain , or at least a small piece of it known as the amygdala , may be prewired to detect threatening stimuli
Research on this issue can help us better understand panic and other intense anxiety-laden responses
What Freud Got Right, Fred Guterl, Newsweek , November 11, 2002
Modern researchers using brain imaging techniques are finding surprising support for Freudian concepts
Such research is showing that Freud's concept of instincts (e.g., aggression), his notion that humans deceive themselves, and his ideas that dreams are important are finding backing from some of today's scientists
The Trait Perspective
Psychology of Safety: The 'Big Five' and You: How Personality
Traits Can Affect Behavior, Scott Geller, Industrial Safety & Hygiene News , July 2004
Psychological scientists have identified five personality traits that appear to be universal in humans
Geller explains the five clusters of traits and describes the effect of each on everyday behavior
Exploring the Traits of Happy People
Social Indicators Research , November 2000 Happiness is important to our mental health
What traits characterize happy people?
How do happy people differ from others?
These and other questions are answered in this scientific article
Getting Smart About Emotional Intelligence, Katina Cremona, Keeping Good Companies , September 2004
Emotional intelligence , a cluster of traits related to 'reading' our own and others' emotions , has become a buzz word
Individuals high in emotional intelligence perform better in school, business, and elsewhere
What emotional intelligence is, how to define and measure it, and why it affects our daily behaviors -serve as the basis for this article
Caring for Your Introvert
The Atlantic Monthly , March 2003
The term introversion was introduced by Carl Jung
Today, many personality tests measure the strength of this trait and its opposite, extroversion
The author, with tongue firmly planted in cheek, looks at the lives of introverts and extroverts and asks if introverts are discriminated against
The Behavioral and Social Learning Perspectives
Skepticism of Caricatures
Gaynor reviews Skinner's ideas about behavior and finds that Skinner is often misunderstood
For example, other psychologists often accuse Skinner of ignoring the role of the brain in behavior and of calling humans empty organisms
What Happened to Behaviorism?, Roddy Roediger, APS Observer , March 2004 The President of the American Psychological Society asks a cogent question as evidenced by the title of this article
Roediger states that behaviorism made a significant intellectual -if not scientific -contribution to psychology
If we would resurrect behavioral theory , psychology might be all the richer for it
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