Manufacturing Social Distress: Psychopathy in Everyday Life / Edition 1

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Toward the Psychology of Malefaction This is a book about human wickedness. I would like to identify two obstacles in the path that this book seeks to traverse. One obstacle is an inappropriate scientism; the other is an inappropriate moralism. There is a kind of scientism that prevents us from seeing that human beings are responsible for what happens on the planet. It is a view that, in the name of science, downplays the role of human beings as agents in what takes place. This view is often expressed in a paradigm that regards human conduct as the "dependent variable," while anything that impinges on the human being is considered the "independent variable." The paradigm further takes the relationship between the dependent and independent variable to be the result of natural law. It characĀ­ teristically ignores the possibility that individual or collective deciĀ­ sion or policy, generated by human beings and not by natural law, is and can be regulatory of conduct.

Social breakdown & the social distress syndrome, war & social distress, media & social distress, etc.

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Editorial Reviews

Rieber (psychology, City U. of New York) argues that his colleagues have been so diligent in explaining psychopathic behavior that they have ended up excusing it. He calls for such phenomena as family violence, violence in films and television, modern war, and serial killers to be considered not merely insane but evil, and for perpetrators to be held accountable for their actions. Annotation c. by Book News, Inc., Portland, Or.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780306453465
  • Publisher: Basic Books
  • Publication date: 2/28/1997
  • Series: Path in Psychology Series
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 244
  • Product dimensions: 6.20 (w) x 9.18 (h) x 0.93 (d)

Table of Contents

Introduction: The Lay of the Land and the Currents of the River. Social Breakdown and the Social Distress Syndrome. The Prince of Darkness and the Heart of Darkness. War and Social Distress: Images of the Enemy. The Banks, Media, and Social Distress. Things Money Can Buy. Terrorism, Organized Crime, and Social Distress. Being 'Good' in 'Bad' Places: Toward a Principled American Lifestyle. Index.
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