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50 Psychology Classics: Who We Are, How We Think, What We Do: Insight and Inspiration from 50 Key Books (50 Classics) Paperback – November 16, 2006

4.5 out of 5 stars 60 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Review

At long last a chance for those outside the profession to discover that there is so much more to psychology than just Freud and Jung. 50 PSYCHOLOGY CLASSICS offers a unique opportunity to become acquainted with a dazzling array of the key works in psychological literature almost overnight. -- Dr Raj Persaud, Gresham Professor for Public Understanding of Psychiatry This delightful book provides thoughtful and entertaining summaries of 50 of the most influential books in psychology. It's a 'must read' for students contemplating a career in psychology. -- VS Ramachandran, Director, Center for Brain and Cognition, University of California, San Diego A brilliant synthesis. The author makes complex ideas accessible and practical, without dumbing down the material. I found myself over and over thinking, 'Oh, that's what that guy meant. -- Douglas Stone, lecturer on law at Harvard Law School and co-author of Difficult Conversations Butler-Bowdon writes with infectious enthusiasm. He is a true scholar of this type of literature. USA Today

About the Author

Tom Butler-Bowdon is an expert in personal development literature. His 50 Classics series, having sold over 100,000 copies in the English language and translated into 17 languages, are the definitive guides to the literature of possibility. He has won many awards including the Benjamin Franklin Self-Help Award and Foreword Magazine's Book of the Year Award. A graduate of the London School of Economics and the University of Sydney, he lives and works in both the UK and Australia. See his work at www.butler-bowdon.com.
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Product Details

  • Series: 50 Classics
  • Paperback: 312 pages
  • Publisher: Nicholas Brealey (November 16, 2006)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1857883861
  • ISBN-13: 978-1857883862
  • Product Dimensions: 6.1 x 0.9 x 9.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 15.2 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (60 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #135,797 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By Jennifer Baker on January 24, 2007
Format: Paperback
I stumbled upon one of Tom's 50 CLASSICS books while doing an internet search one day, and I was so excited about the concept! For a person like me-- who loves books related to self-help, success, spirituality, and psychology and yet struggles to find time to read the many that are out there, this concept is absolutely ideal. In this busy and information-overloaded world, it's impossible for most of us to read all of the books that Tom has read for each 50 CLASSICS, much less retain the information in each. Thankfully, Tom has done the challenging and time-consuming work to make this important information more accessible for all of us. He has identified some of the most influential authors in each area and summarized their work in a clear and well-organized manner. Furthermore, in the introduction to each of his books, Tom includes a well-written overview of all the authors and books included in each 50 CLASSICS. In these overviews, he further summarizes the books and themes in ways that make the information easy-to-understand and remember. All of this gives the reader extremely helpful and educational information in a clear, concise format-- and in one book that easily can be reviewed often. I believe that's what it takes to have any hope of truly retaining the main ideas of so many excellent books and truly applying them to make positive changes in one's life. Furthermore, Tom's identification of such interesting authors and books, some of which I hadn't heard of before, has helped me identify some titles that I want to read in their entirety (when I can find the time, of course)--and thankfully, Tom's summaries will always be helpful reminders of the main points.Read more ›
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Format: Paperback
Kings who sent out explorers would eagerly await the gems, riches, and exotica with which the explorers returned. We all live like relative kings now, and our explorer, Tom Butler-Bowdon has returned once again, this time with rich insights into the human mind.

What determines our personality? Is it our genetics, our environment, or circumstantial conditioning? What about our primary motivation? Is it sexual, our will to power, sheer survival, or our desire to close our personal existential gap? Since your mind was already focused on sex, how does our sex affect the way our minds work, and how is the way our minds feel about sex affected by our sex to begin with? And what is going on in the minds of others and how do we best communicate with them?

For lifelong learners, this book is another joy. We have the same time leverage provided by 50 Self-Help Classics, 50 Success Classics, and 50 Spiritual Classics. For each work, Tom gives us his consistent format of introductory quotes, the main idea in one sentence, related chapters, the distillation of the work, final comments, and relevant author biographical information. These books have raised the content level of my professional speaking and training faster than any other series. This is high density mind food!

Unlike the kings of old, we can easily experience the explorer's destinations by using Butler-Bowdon's book as a travel guide. When you do follow up by reading his chosen classics you will be impressed by his accuracy in crystallizing the essence of the works he has studied. Be the beneficiary of his intellectual journey!

ATTENTION: IF YOU ARE A COLLEGE STUDENT TAKING LOW LEVEL PSYCH COURSES, BUY AND READ THIS BOOK.
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Format: Paperback
Following on from Tom Butler-Bowdon's previous volumes in the "50 Classics" series, this first class collection of summaries of key psychology books and authors continues in the same broad, accessible, but also in-depth, style.

As the sub-title says, psychology is all about who we are, how we think, what we do. In other words, what it means to be human. Topics covered include the unconscious mind, happiness and mental health, the study of personality, motivation, love, creativity and relationships.

With key "in a nutshell" comments, the author cuts to the essential message of each writer, while addressing more complex subtleties in the accompanying text. As with Tom's other books, there is a very wide range of carefully chosen authors. I had come across several here in an academic context, but in general the emphasis is on popular psychology, "Psychology for nonpsychologists" as the jacket puts it. The range includes RD Laing, Oliver Sacks, Fritz Perls, Ivan Pavlov, Eric Berne, to pick a few random names. The founding fathers such as William James and Sigmund Freud are covered, alongside over a century's worth of contributions right up to Malcolm Gladwell with his 2005 bestseller on the importance of first impressions and split-second judgment.

There is a huge amount of psychological and self-development literature available these days. It can be difficult to know where to begin but each volume in the "50 Classics" is an excellent starting point. "50 Psychology Classics" is another winner in the series and I wholeheartedly recommend it!
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