50 Great Myths of Popular Psychology: Shattering Widespread by Scott O. Lilienfeld, Steven Jay Lynn, John Ruscio, Barry L.

By Scott O. Lilienfeld, Steven Jay Lynn, John Ruscio, Barry L. Beyerstein

50 nice Myths of well known Psychology makes use of well known myths as a car for assisting scholars and laypersons to tell apart technological know-how from pseudoscience.
* makes use of universal myths as a car for exploring how one can distinguish authentic from fictional claims in renowned psychology
* Explores themes that readers will relate to, yet frequently misunderstand, comparable to "opposites attract", "people use merely 10% in their brains", and "handwriting unearths your personality"
* presents a "mythbusting kit" for comparing people psychology claims in way of life
* Teaches crucial severe pondering abilities via certain discussions of every delusion
* comprises over two hundred extra mental myths for readers to explore
* includes an Appendix of helpful websites for reading mental myths
* includes a postscript of exceptional mental findings that sound like myths yet which are real
* enticing and obtainable writing type that appeals to scholars and lay readers alike

Five sizeable Myths of well known Psychology
Amazon-exclusive content material from Scott O. Lilienfeld, Steven Jay Lynn, John Ruscio, and Barry L. Beyerstein, the authors of 50 nice Myths of renowned Psychology

Virtually each day, the inside track media, tv indicates, motion pictures, and web bombard us with claims relating to a bunch of mental issues: psychics, out of physique reports, recovered thoughts, and lie detection, to call in basic terms a couple of. Even an off-the-cuff walk via our local book shop finds dozens of self-help, dating, restoration, and habit books that serve up beneficiant parts of recommendation for guiding our paths alongside life’s rocky street. but many renowned psychology resources are rife with misconceptions. certainly, in today’s fast moving global of data overload, misinformation approximately psychology is at the very least as common as actual details. Self-help authorities, tv speak express hosts, and self-proclaimed psychological well-being specialists generally dispense mental suggestion that’s a bewildering mixture of truths, half-truths, and outright falsehoods. with out a in charge journey consultant for checking out mental fable from fact, we’re in danger for changing into misplaced in a jungle of “psychomythology.”

In our new booklet, 50 nice Myths of renowned Psychology: Shattering frequent Misconceptions approximately Human Nature, we research extensive 50 common myths in renowned psychology (along with nearly 250 different myths and “mini-myths”), current examine facts demonstrating that those ideals are fictional, discover their ramifications in pop culture and daily life, and hint their mental and sociological origins. the following, in David Letterman-like type, we current - in no specific order – our personal applicants for 5 giant myths of well known psychology.

Myth # 1: Most humans use simply 10% in their mind power
There are a number of purposes to doubt that ninety% of our brains lie silent. At a trifling 2-3% of our bodyweight, our mind consumes over 20% of the oxygen we breathe. It’s unbelievable that evolution may have approved the squandering of assets on a scale essential to construct and retain the sort of vastly underutilized organ. additionally, wasting some distance lower than ninety% of the mind to coincidence or affliction ordinarily has catastrophic results (Kolb & Whishaw, 2003).

How did the ten% fable start? One clue leads again a few century to psychologist William James, who as soon as wrote that he doubted that standard folks in achieving greater than approximately 10% in their intellectual potential. even supposing James talked by way of underdeveloped capability, a slew of confident considering specialists remodeled “10% of our capacity” into “10% of our brain” (Beyerstein, 1999).

Myth # 2: It’s higher to specific anger than to carry it in
If you’re like most folks, you think that liberating anger is more healthy than bottling it up. in a single survey, sixty six% of undergraduates agreed that expressing pent-up anger--sometimes referred to as “catharsis”--is an efficient technique of decreasing one’s possibility for aggression (Brown, 1983).

Yet greater than forty years of analysis finds that expressing anger without delay towards another individual or not directly (such as towards an item) truly turns up the warmth on aggression (Bushman, Baumeister, & Stack, 1999; Tavris, 1988). learn means that expressing anger is beneficial simply while it’s observed through positive problem-solving designed to deal with the resource of the anger (Littrell, 1998).

Why is that this delusion so renowned? very likely, humans frequently mistakenly characteristic the truth that they believe greater once they show anger to catharsis, instead of to the truth that anger frequently subsides by itself after awhile (Lohr, Olatunji, Baumeister, & Bushman, 2007).

Myth # 3: Low vanity is an important explanation for mental Problems
Many well known psychologists have lengthy maintained that low vanity is a first-rate offender in producing bad behaviors, together with violence, melancholy, anxiousness, and alcoholism. the vanity stream has came upon its means into mainstream academic practices. a few athletic leagues award trophies to all schoolchildren to prevent making wasting rivals suppose inferior (Sommers & Satel, 2005). furthermore, the net is chock filled with academic items meant to spice up children’s vainness.

But there’s a fly within the ointment: learn indicates that low self worth isn’t strongly linked to terrible psychological future health. In a painstakingly - and possibly painful! - assessment, Roy Baumeister and his colleagues (2003) canvassed over 15,000 reviews linking vainness to almost each feasible mental variable. they discovered that vanity is minimally with regards to interpersonal luck, and never always concerning alcohol or drug abuse. possibly such a lot wonderful of all, they discovered that “low vanity is neither precious nor adequate for depression” (Baumeister et al., 2003, p. 6).

Myth # 4: Human reminiscence works like a tape recorder or video digital camera, and effectively files the occasions we’ve experienced
Despite the occasionally all-too-obvious failings of daily reminiscence, surveys exhibit that many of us think that their stories function a great deal like tape recorders, video cameras, or DVDs. It’s real that we frequently bear in mind super emotional occasions, often referred to as flashbulb memories simply because they appear to have a photographic caliber (Brown & Kulik, 1977). however, study indicates that even those stories wither over the years and are at risk of distortions (Krackow, Lynn, & Payne, 2005-2006).

Today, there’s extensive consensus between psychologists that reminiscence isn’t reproductive—it doesn’t reproduction accurately what we’ve experienced—but reconstructive. What we bear in mind is usually a blurry mix of exact and misguided memories, in addition to what jells with our ideals and hunches. instead of viewing our reminiscence as a tape recorder, we will be able to extra aptly describe our reminiscence as an ever-changing medium that highlights our skill to create fluid narratives of our stories.

Myth # 5: Hypnosis is a distinct “trance” country that differs in variety from wakefulness
Popular video clips and books painting the hypnotic trance country as so strong that differently basic humans will dedicate an assassination (The Manchurian Candidate); dedicate suicide (The backyard Murders); understand just a person’s inner good looks (Shallow Hal); and our favourite, fall sufferer to brainwashing through alien preachers who use messages embedded in sermons (Invasion of the distance Preachers).

But study indicates that hypnotized humans can withstand or even oppose hypnotic feedback (Lynn, Rhue, & Weekes, 1990; Nash, 2001), and won’t do issues which are out of personality, like harming humans they dislike. moreover, hypnosis bears not more than a superficial resemblance to sleep: mind wave experiences show that hypnotized individuals are awake.

So there’s no cause to think that hypnosis differs in style from general wakefulness. as an alternative, hypnosis seems to be just one technique between many for expanding people’s responses to feedback.

More information regarding each one of those myths and a whole record of references come in 50 nice Myths of renowned Psychology.

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Additional info for 50 Great Myths of Popular Psychology: Shattering Widespread Misconceptions about Human Behavior

Sample text

In a similar vein, early researchers’ admirably modest admissions that they didn’t know what 90% of the brain did probably contributed to the myth that it does nothing. Another possible source of confusion may have been laypersons’ misunderstanding of the role of glial cells, brain cells that outnumber the brain’s neurons (nerve cells) by a factor of about 10. Although neurons are the scene of the action with respect to thinking and other mental activities, glial cells perform essential support functions for the neurons that do the heavy lifting, psychologically speaking.

Debunking myths comes with its share of risks (Chew, 2004; Landau & Bavaria, 2003). Psychologist Norbert Schwarz and his colleagues (Schwarz, Sanna, Skurnik, & Yoon, 2007; Skurnik, Yoon, Park, & Schwarz, 2005) showed that correcting a misconception, such as “The side effects of a flu vaccine are often worse than the flu itself,” can sometimes backfire by leading people to be more likely to believe this misconception later. ” Schwarz’s work reminds us that merely memorizing a list of misconceptions isn’t enough: It’s crucial to understand the reasons underlying each misconception.

In the journal Medical Hypotheses, Flensmark (2004) observed that the appearance of shoes in the Western world about 1,000 years ago was soon followed by the first appearance of cases of schizophrenia. From these findings, he proposed that shoes play a role in triggering schizophrenia. qxd 30/6/09 11:44 AM Page 15 coincided with other changes, such as the growth of modernization or an increase in stressful living conditions, which may have contributed more directly to the emergence of schizophrenia.

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