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Psychobabble and Biobunk: Using Psychological Science to Think Critically About Popular Psychology, 3rd edition

  • Carol Tavris
Psychobabble and Biobunk: Using Psychological Science to Think Critically About Popular Psychology

ISBN-13: 9780205015917

Includes: Paperback

3rd edition

Published byPearson (October 22nd 2010) - Copyright © 2011

Free delivery
$33.32 $26.66
Free delivery
$33.32 $26.66

What's included

  • Paperback

    You'll get a bound printed text.


This revised and updated handbook features a selection of essay-style book reviews by Carol Tavris, written for the Times Literary Supplement, The Chronicle of Higher Education, American Scientist, and The New York Times Book Review. These reviews apply psychological research and principles of scientific thinking to ideas presented in the books. They aim to show how critical thinking can help people assess arguments promoted in the popular culture, and how to separate those that are scientifically sound from those based on “psychobabble”–pop-psych notions dressed up in fancy, sciency-sounding language. These essays may be used to encourage debate in the classroom or as a basis for student papers. Students can be asked to write or present their own points of view on a topic, drawing on other research and the guidelines of critical thinking (defined and described in a prefatory “Note to the Reader”) to support their conclusions. Although these reviews can be used in many social science and composition courses, the topics covered and the critical-thinking guidelines that apply to them correspond to specific material in Carole Wade and Carol Tavris’s Psychology and Invitation to Psychology.

Table of contents

Thinking Critically–and Why We Often Don’t

1.  “Why won’t they admit they’re wrong? And other skeptics’ mysteries” by Carol Tavris and Elliot Aronson  


Personality, Motivation, and Development

2. Outliers, by Malcolm Gladwell  

3.  Men to Boys: The making of modern immaturity, by Gary Cross

4.  Understanding Attachment, by Jean Mercer

5.  Love at Goon Park: Harry Harlow and the Science of Affection, by Deborah Blum

6.  Happiness: Lessons from a new science, by Richard Layard; Making Happy People: The nature of  happiness and its origins in childhood, by Paul Martin; and Going Sane, by Adam Phillips 

7.  Bright-Sided: How the relentless promotion of positive thinking has undermined America,by Barbara Ehrenreich 

8.  The Nurture Assumption, by Judith Rich Harris

9.  Personality, by Daniel Nettle

10.  “Are Girls As Mean As They Say They Are?” (review essay)  


Psychotherapy and the Scientist-Practitioner Gap

11.  The Body Never Lies, by Alice Miller

12.  Into the Minds of Madmen, by Don DeNevi & John Campbell

13.  Remembering Trauma, by Richard McNally 

14.  In Therapy We Trust, by Eva Moskowitz 

15.  Prisoners of Hate, by Aaron T. Beck 

16.  Making Us Crazy: DSM–The psychiatric bible and the creation of mental disorders,

by Herb Kutchins and Stuart A. Kirk 

17.  Of Two Minds: The growing disorder in American psychiatry, by T. M. Luhrmann


Research Methods and Social Issues

18.  The Hungry Gene, by Ellen Ruppel Shell  

19.  The Genius Factory, by David Plotz  

20.  Rape: A history from 1860 to the present, by Joanna Bourke

21.  Sex and the Psyche, by Brett Kahr

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