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The Angry Smile: The Psychology of Passive-Aggressive Behavior in Families, Schools, and Workplaces 2nd Edition

12 customer reviews
ISBN-13: 978-1416404231
ISBN-10: 1416404236
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Editorial Reviews

Book by Nicholas James Long, Jody E. Long, Signe Whitson

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Product Details

  • Perfect Paperback: 166 pages
  • Publisher: Pro ed; 2nd edition (December 31, 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1416404236
  • ISBN-13: 978-1416404231
  • Product Dimensions: 0.8 x 8.8 x 11 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.1 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (12 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #127,935 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

Format: Perfect Paperback
I liked this book. I found it to be well outlined and well written. If its subject were one that particularly interested me, then I'd say I loved this book. But I won't go that far except by giving it a 5-star rating. The book is broken into three parts and 12 chapters as follows:

I. What is passive aggression ("P-A")? [chapts 1-4]
II. Identifying P-A behaviors [chapts 5-8]
III. Changing P-A behaviors [chapts 9-12]

1. The secret world of P-A
2. Developmental pathways to a P-A personality
3. Reasons people use P-A behaviors
4. The 5 levels of P-A behavior
5. P-A behaviors at home
6. P-A behaviors at school
7. P-A behaviors in marriage & extended family
8. P-A behaviors in the workplace
9. Counter P-A behavior
10. The P-A conflict cycle
11. Changing responses to P-A behavior
12. Benign confrontation of P-A behavior
A. Additional examples of benign confrontation

The authors tell us at the outset that this book is a write-up of years of research and presenting seminars for people who suffer from P-A personality or are subjected to such people. The book is full of examples of troubled youth, anxious professionals, conflicted parents, contradictory spouses, hostile coworkers, and resistant bosses. I'd have to say it seemed like this book comprehensively examined P-A behavior and Counter P-A behavior. I highly recommend anyone involved in (and suffering) a P-A conflict cycle to read this book. It should help you better understand your problem and put you in a position to take steps to dig your way out.

P-A behavior can be very destructive. If you suffer from it, then this book can help you learn what it is, learn how to recognize when you do it, and then stop doing it. If you are subjected to someone inflicting P-A behavior on you, then this book can help you learn what it is, learn how to recognize it, and then avoid it. 5 stars!
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35 of 36 people found the following review helpful By Elisabeth Rice on March 6, 2009
Format: Perfect Paperback
The Angry Smile: The Psychology of Passive-Aggressive Behavior in Families, Schools and Workplaces (2nd edition) is a must read for people hungry to better understand human behavior. Long, Long and Whitson use data, realistic examples, and a new, expanded intervention section to create a book that leaves the reader enlightened and empowered. Readers will knowingly nod in agreement as the authors explain the indirect behaviors that frustrate relationships with families, students and colleagues. In addition, readers will learn a step by step process to (1) examine the presenting behavior and then (2) DEAL with the behavior. There are many books that attempt to address aggression, anxiety or depression, but this is the only text that examines the understudied dynamic of passive aggressive behavior. Each chapter is written clearly with a caring, strength-based perspective. It is a required textbook for teachers in our graduate program and is a required read for our university supervisors.

Dr.Elisabeth Hess Rice, Ed.D.
Assistant Professor, The George Washington University
Department of Teacher Preparation and Special Education
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32 of 33 people found the following review helpful By Stephanie Manley VINE VOICE on February 9, 2009
Format: Perfect Paperback
The Angry Smile is one of the best books I have read on anger since reading The Dance of Anger. A well put together book brings about ideas of why their is passive-aggressiveness, the common errors people make when dealing with passive-aggressiveness, and how to best handle the passive-aggressiveness of others. I like that examples are given in a variety of situations, in schools, within close family relations, and in working situations.

Passive-aggressiveness is a difficult behavior to deal with. This type of behavior often throws even the most seasoned person off kilter. We can do two things in response to this type of behavior, we can change our response, and we can try to change the behavior. While we can't always change the behavior of the passive-aggressive person, there is the hope that we can always change our response.
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17 of 17 people found the following review helpful By Kelly Klepfer VINE VOICE on August 11, 2009
Format: Perfect Paperback
The Angry Smile is a terrific resource when you have a person (or people) in your life that push your buttons and gray your hair. Written in a textbook format with chapter overviews, case study examples, and end of chapter summaries, this teaching guide does not read overtly techie like a textbook. I discovered some very practical helps when dealing with a couple of people who make me feel crazy. I also learned some identifying signs and some warning flags that I had crossed or was ready to cross into the crazy making dance I didn't want to dance.

If you are in management or deal with people on a regular basis this manual could be helpful to you. It's not just for teachers or mental health care workers. Very valuable information, especially if you are plagued with confusion over why one particular person pushes every button you've got and some you didn't know you had.
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16 of 16 people found the following review helpful By Midwest Book Review on February 8, 2009
Format: Perfect Paperback
Now in an updated second edition, The Angry Smile: The Psychology of Passive-Aggressive Behavior in Families, Schools, and Workplaces is a straightforward, psychological assessment of passive-aggressive behavior and how best to deal with it. Passive-aggressive behavior comes from underlying anger that the passive-aggressive individual cannot or will not express in a healthy way, and so it is expressed as a subtle assault of a thousand cuts - from ignoring or "forgetting" requests to intentionally doing unacceptable work to self-destructive behavior. Outraged reactions to passive-aggressive behavior (throwing a tantrum) emotionally rewards the passive-aggressive individual; The Angry Smile instead teaches ways to calmly defuse potential problems before they start by setting pinpoint clear guidelines, as well as the skill of benign confrontation. A useful reference tool for psychologists and counselors, and an absolute "must-have" for teachers, parents, or anyone with a managerial or supervisory position job. "Counter-aggressive behaviors are the common cold of the anger world. They occur when a nonaggressive person interacts with other people who are aggressive or hostile and, in a sense, 'catches' their anger, as they would an airborne disease. By acting on counter-aggressive feelings, the normally 'healthy' person mirrors the behaviors of the person who had the original anger bug. Both end up behaving badly."
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