Fooling Ourselves: Self-Deception in Politics, Religion, and Terrorism

Fooling Ourselves: Self-Deception in Politics, Religion, and Terrorism

by Harry Charalambos Triandis
     
 

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Self-deception occurs because we often see the world the way we would like it to be, rather than the way it is. Our brains so long for things the way we want them, we might not even be aware we are fooling ourselves, explains author Harry Triandis, a widely known Professor Emeritus of Psychology. Across cultures and around the world, self-deception is a phenomenon

Overview

Self-deception occurs because we often see the world the way we would like it to be, rather than the way it is. Our brains so long for things the way we want them, we might not even be aware we are fooling ourselves, explains author Harry Triandis, a widely known Professor Emeritus of Psychology. Across cultures and around the world, self-deception is a phenomenon that has subtle and profound effects on everyday life, explains Triandis, also former president of the International Association of Cross-Cultural Psychology. In this work, he not only explains how and why self-deceptions occur in three areas - politics, religion, and terrorism - but also how to recognize and reduce the frequency of fooling ourselves.

Insights here include consideration of personal and societal self-deceptions, as well as extensive understanding of how politics, ideologies, and religions can frame reality for each of us in such a way that it is, in our minds, warped so the stage is well-set for self-deception. This text will be of special interest to general readers drawn to politics and religion, as well as scholars of psychology, anthropology, and sociology.

Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"A respected, internationally known expert on cross-cultural issues in psychology, Triandis (emer., Univ. of Illinois)
offers here what is perhaps his most important piece of work. . . . Required reading for all concerned citizens. Summing Up: Highly recommended." - Choice

"After first seeking to demonstrate the widespread nature of self-deception and its harmful effects on well-being, he discusses cultural similarities and differences of individualist and collective self-deception, the ways that self-deception leads to poor information processing in politics, the self- deception of religion and the paradoxical human need for spirituality, the kinds of self- deception among terrorists, and means to decrease self-deception." - Reference & Research Book News

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780313364389
Publisher:
Greenwood Publishing Group, Incorporated
Publication date:
12/30/2008
Series:
International Contributions in Psychology Series
Edition description:
New Edition
Pages:
276
Product dimensions:
6.40(w) x 9.30(h) x 1.20(d)

What People are saying about this

Robert S. Wyer
"Self-deception can have an enormous impact on individual and social behavior and international relations. In examining this impact, Harry Triandis has applied his uniquely broad perspective and wealth of knowledge to some of the most important issues of our time, analyzing the role of self-deception in religious, political and cultural ideologies.

'This ground-breaking book, by one of the world's foremost scholars in cultural and cross-cultural psychology, is essential reading for both social scientists and nonprofessionals concerned with the present and future of the society in which they live."

Richard EckersleyDirector
"In a world of increasingly narrow specialization, Harry Triandis is a rare commodity. In this important book, he brings a formidable intellect, prodigious breadth of knowledge, rich psychological insight, robust common sense, and courageous honesty to bear on the threats and challenges that mark our times. He argues convincingly that at the core of humanity's troubling future is our unique capacity for self-deception."
Robert L. Munroe
"Harry Triandis argues compellingly that we are all unavoidably guilty of self-deception. Citing a very large set of findings from the behavioral-science literature, he concludes that our political and religious reasoning is especially distorted, and he shows how and why. But he also suggests that we can more realistically appraise our condition and move ourselves toward a better world."
Richard Eckersley Director

"In a world of increasingly narrow specialization, Harry Triandis is a rare commodity. In this important book, he brings a formidable intellect, prodigious breadth of knowledge, rich psychological insight, robust common sense, and courageous honesty to bear on the threats and challenges that mark our times. He argues convincingly that at the core of humanity's troubling future is our unique capacity for self-deception."

Elaine Hatfield
"Harry Triandis has written a fascinating book. A lifetime of scholarship has gone into answering the provocative questions he poses and he addresses them with his usual intelligence and grace."
Albert Pepitone
"Fooling Ourselves offers a fascinating and intellectually rewarding adventure on a bold path in social psychology that will appeal to a wide assortment of psychological and social scientists."

Meet the Author

Harry C. Triandis is Professor Emeritus of Psychology at the University of Illinois and a Fellow of three divisions of the American Psychological Association. His awards include APA's Distinguished International Psychologist of the Year, Distinguished Lecturer of the Year, and the award for Distinguished Contributions to International Psychology. He also earned the American Psychological Society's prestigious James M. Cattell Award. Triandis is a former Guggenheim Fellow, Ford Foundation Faculty Fellow, Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, and Fellow of the International Association of Cross-Cultural Psychology. He also served as a Distinguished Fulbright Professor and as President for the Society for the Psychological Study of Social Issues. He has authored seven books, including Culture and Social Behavior, and edited the six-volume Handbook of Cross-Cultural Psychology.

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