The Liar in Your Life: The Way to Truthful Relationships

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Overview

In The Liar in Your Life, psychology professor Robert Feldman, one of the world's leading authorities on deception, draws on his immense body of knowledge to give fresh insights into how and why we lie, how our culture has become increasingly tolerant of deception, the cost it exacts on us, and what to do about it. His work is at once surprising and sobering, full of corrections for common myths and explanations of pervasive ...
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Overview

In The Liar in Your Life, psychology professor Robert Feldman, one of the world's leading authorities on deception, draws on his immense body of knowledge to give fresh insights into how and why we lie, how our culture has become increasingly tolerant of deception, the cost it exacts on us, and what to do about it. His work is at once surprising and sobering, full of corrections for common myths and explanations of pervasive oversimplifications.

Feldman examines marital infidelity, little white lies, career-driven resumé lies, and how we teach children to lie. Along the way, he reveals-despite our beliefs to the contrary- how it is nearly impossible to spot a liar (studies have shown no relationship between nervousness, lack of eye contact, or a trembling voice, and acts of deception). He also provides startling evidence of just how integral lying is to our culture; indeed, his research shows that two people, meeting for the first time, will lie to each other an average of three times in the first ten minutes of a conversation.

Feldman uses this discussion of deception to explore ways we can cope with infidelity, betrayal, and mistrust, in our friends and family. He also describes the lies we tell ourselves: Sometimes, the liar in your life is the person you see in the mirror. With incisive clarity and wry wit, Feldman has written a truthful book for anyone who whose life has been touched by deception.





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Editorial Reviews

From Barnes & Noble
A few years ago, psychologist Dr. Robert Feldman conducted an experiment on lying that produced results so startling that they were reported in media on both sides of the Atlantic. He learned that people in the study lied on the average of three times in a ten-minute conversation, often without obvious motivation. In The Liar in Your Life, he describes recent research revealing varieties of deception among humans and other primates. Perhaps more important, he explains what you can do about all the liars in your life -- including yourself.
Library Journal

Feldman (psychology, Univ. of Massachusetts, Amherst; Understanding Psychology) reviews studies of lying that he and others have conducted, demonstrating that deception is deeply ingrained in social interaction. Writing for the lay reader and using examples from recent news, he explores, e.g., how learning to deceive is part of a child's socialization, with implications for cognitive and social development. He also shows that lying is essential for self-preservation yet often leads to self-deception. Frequently restating previous findings, Feldman traces the evolution of lying and its consequences for personal and workplace relationships. Trying to be objective and dispassionate, he does not offer formulas or exercises for becoming more honest. Feldman admits that it would be difficult to live in a society where the truth was always told. His final advice is to compromise: accept that lying is universal, become comfortable with uncertainty, and verify information before making conclusions; be aware of your tendency to lie and commit to be more honest. Recommended for self-help fans.
—Lucille M. Boone

From the Publisher
"Bob Walter adds his own pizzazz in his narration. With an approach that is arresting but not alarming, you can feel the drama as he delivers examples of lies that occur in personal, government, media, and business arenas. His vocal centeredness helps him engage with the book's exposé approach and make listeners pay attention without making them feel manipulated."—AudioFile
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780594020448
  • Publisher: Grand Central Publishing
  • Publication date: 8/3/2009
  • Pages: 304
  • Product dimensions: 6.20 (w) x 9.10 (h) x 0.90 (d)

Meet the Author

A Fellow of both the American Psychological Association and Association for Psychological Science, Robert Feldman's research has examined lying and everyday deception for over 25 years. His studies have been supported by grants from the U.S. National Institute of Mental Health and the National Institute on Disabilities and Rehabilitation Research.

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Table of Contents

Introduction 1

Ch. 1 Everyday Inventions of Everyday Life 5

Ch. 2 The Liar's Advantage 27

Ch. 3 Deception 101: How Children Learn to Lie 57

Ch. 4 The Evolution of Deceit: Are We Born to Lie? 79

Ch. 5 Broken Trust: Loving a Liar 97

Ch. 6 Self-Deception: The Lies We Tell Ourselves 121

Ch. 7 Cosmetic Deceit: Lies to Make Us Seem Richer, Smarter, Better 143

Ch. 8 Lies with Intent: Deceit to Trick or Cheat 163

Ch. 9 Synthetic Reality: Media-Manufactured Lies 181

Ch. 10 Career Lies: Deception in the Workplace 201

Ch. 11 Web of Deceit: The Brave New World of Internet Dishonesty 223

Conclusion: Living with Lies 245

Acknowledgments 261

Sources 263

Index 283

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