Testing Testing: Social Consequences of the Examined Life

Testing Testing: Social Consequences of the Examined Life

by F. Allan Hanson

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This book is about how our addiction to testing influences both society and ourselves as socially defined persons. The analysis focuses on tests of people, particularly tests in schools, intelligence tests, vocational interest tests, lie detection, integrity tests, and drug tests. Diagnostic psychiatric tests and medical tests are included only tangentially. A good deal of the descriptive material will be familiar to readers from their personal experience as takers and/or givers of tests. But testing, as with much of ordinary life, has implications that we seldom pause to ponder and often do not even notice. My aim is to uncover in the everyday operation of testing a series of well-concealed and mostly unintended consequences that exercise far deeper and more pervasive influence in social life than is commonly recognized.
This title is part of UC Press's Voices Revived program, which commemorates University of California Press's mission to seek out and cultivate the brightest minds and give them voice, reach, and impact. Drawing on a backlist dating to 1893, Voices Revived makes high-quality, peer-reviewed scholarship accessible once again using print-on-demand technology. This title was originally published in 1993.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780520305861
Publisher: University of California Press
Publication date: 09/01/2020
Edition description: First Edition
Pages: 392
Product dimensions: 6.00(w) x 9.00(h) x 0.87(d)

About the Author

F. Allan Hanson is Professor Emeritus of Anthropology at the University of Kansas. His previous books include Meaning in Culture, Studies in Symbolism and Cultural Communication, and, with Louise Hanson, Counterpoint in Maori Culture.

Table of Contents

Infinite Examination

2. Before Science: The Early History of Authenticity Testing
3. Lie Detection
4. No Sanctuary
5. Testing and the War on Drugs
6. From Drug Control to Mind Control

7. The Forest of Pencils
8. Willing, Ready, and Able: Vocational Testing
9. "Artificial"

10. Conclusion: Man the Measured
Appendix: Drug Testing Tables


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