From Library Journal
Drawing on evolutionary psychology theories, imaginary meetings with Sigmund Freud, and a fictitious advertising agency, popular psychology writer Weiner weaves a logical and understandable explanation of why apparently normal people sometimes behave in a totally irrational manner. His collaborator, psychiatrist Hefter (Northwestern Medical Sch.), gives a short, academic-oriented commentary at the end of each chapter. Weiner brings into play Freud's premise that the "id" is what causes people to commit foolish, irrational, and even horrendous acts; he labels this part of the brain the "Inner Dummy." This refreshing book is both interesting and readable; the use of Freud as a literary device adds to the book's uniqueness and value. Highly recommended for popular psychology collections in public and academic libraries.AElizabeth Goeters, Georgia Perimeter Coll., Dunwoody
Copyright 1999 Reed Business Information, Inc.
In this informative, entertaining, and well-researched book, Weiner explores why it is that people do irrational and compulsive things, sometimes against their better judgment. He intersperses his text with an imaginary conversation with Sigmund Freud, engaged in an advertising campaign to market his concept of the id, or Inner Dummy. The Freud device is meant to simplify the psychiatric concepts of id, ego, and superego, but Weiner does a fine job of that himself. The book is meant to explore the "underlying causes and nature of irrational, neurotic outlooks in a way that would be comprehensible to most of us." Weiner examines a range of irrational behavior, from that of President Clinton in the Monica Lewinski affair to the murderous activities of Slobodan Milosevic and Adolf Hitler. We all have some sort of personality disorder, some better managed or concealed than others, according to Weiner. He also examines treatments for personality disorders. Coauthor Hefter, a clinical psychiatrist, offers commentary at the end of each chapter. Vanessa Bush