Metapsychology Online Reviews - Volume 21, Number 47
 
Featured Reviews
How People Change by Marion Solomon and Daniel J. Siegel (Editors)How People Change
by Marion Solomon and Daniel J. Siegel (Editors)
Tue, Oct 10th 2017
Back To Basics: Fitness with Charlotte Ord by Charlotte OrdBack To Basics: Fitness with Charlotte Ord
by Charlotte Ord
Tue, Oct 10th 2017
Extreme Measures by Jessica Nutik ZitterExtreme Measures
by Jessica Nutik Zitter
Tue, Oct 3rd 2017
 
A Fragile Life
Accepting Our Vulnerability
By Todd May
Review by Finn Janning, PhD on Tue, Nov 21st 2017.
A Fragile Life by Todd MayThe main argument in Todd May's book, A Fragile Life: Accepting Our Vulnerability, is that most of us would be unwilling to choose an invulnerable life even if we were given the opportunity. Of course, we all understand that in reality, it is impossible to live a life where we avoid all sources of pain. In his book, the author proposes that we should accept our vulnerability and acknowledge that the suffering is part of life. The question is: How do we develop that acceptance within ourselves? It is doubtful whether May is correct in his assumptions regarding what most people might choose or
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Inclusive Ethics
Extending Beneficence and Egalitarian Justice
By Ingmar Persson
Review by Jonathan Lewis on Tue, Nov 21st 2017.
Inclusive Ethics by Ingmar PerssonWith his latest work, Ingmar Persson has developed extant ideas found in almost thirty publications produced during the last three decades. The result is an original, eclectic, highly provocative and, what he calls, 'revisionary' piece of morally-oriented thought, [Critics would likely argue against the claim that Persson posits a 'moral theory' due to the absence of any explicit theory of the right and any justified normative claims regarding the nature of moral evaluation and the strength of moral reasons.] one that strives to be systematic (despite Persson acknowledging its limitations) and
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Going Into Town
A Love Letter to New York
By Roz Chast
Review by Christian Perring on Tue, Nov 21st 2017.
Going Into Town by Roz ChastGoing into Town is a guide to moving to Manhattan and learning to enjoy it, although it would be equally good for tourists. It is a revised version of a booklet Chast created when her daughter moved to NYC for college. Chast wanted to explain the basics of how to get around town, what to do for entertainment, and how to appreciate the beauty of the city. It has a mixture of personal anecdote and facts about the city, illustrated in Chast's familiar style, along with a few photographs. It is entertaining and charming in its quirkiness. Chast highlights the standpipes which populate the city and
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White Rage
The Unspoken Truth of Our Racial Divide
By Carol Anderson
Review by Kaolin on Tue, Nov 21st 2017.
White Rage by Carol AndersonWhite Rage will interest you in attaining a greater truth regarding racism and the impact whiteness has had on the history of the U.S.A. while illustrating how daunting the Black experience of whiteness is within the system known as white supremacy which pivots us against one another.There are 289 pages including 82 pages of footnotes, a short section of recommended reading and questions for discussion. White Rage speaks to the current-day crisis in cross-cultural relations and the ways in which the Reconstruction while promising was stripped from the very beginning to suit the will of white
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Testosterone Rex
Myths of Sex, Science, and Society
By Cordelia Fine
Review by Hennie Weiss on Tue, Nov 14th 2017.
Testosterone Rex by Cordelia Fine In Testosterone Rex: Myths of Sex, Science and Society, Cordelia Fine looks into the past, present and future research regarding sex differences and testosterone. Fine does not state that there are no sex differences among women and men, and does not state that testosterone does not play a role when looking at biological differences, but the overall message based on research is that these differences are often minute and in many ways do not display the stark differences that are culturally entrenched and part of popular belief. Fine therefore starts with past research. Studies of the past h
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How and Why Are Some Therapists Better Than Others?
Understanding Therapist Effects
By Louis G. Castonguay and Clara E. Hill (Editors)
Review by Maura Pilotti, PhD on Tue, Nov 14th 2017.
How and Why Are Some Therapists Better Than Others? by Louis G. Castonguay and Clara E. Hill (Editors)In essence, How and why are some therapists better than others? Understanding therapist effects, a book edited by Louis G. Castonguay and Clara E. Hill, is a review of how little scholars and practitioners know about the contribution made by therapists to the effectiveness of psychological interventions. The term therapist effects has been specifically coined to label the impact of clinicians' individual characteristics, competencies, and actions on client outcomes, which can be statistically separated from the impact of type of treatment and clients' symptomatology (encompassing needs and sev
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We Are Okay
By Nina LaCour
Review by Christian Perring on Tue, Nov 14th 2017.
We Are Okay by Nina LaCourSlow placed and meditative, We Are Okay has Marin telling her story of grief and disappointment. She is in her first year of college, and, implausibly, she is staying alone in the dorms over the winter break. She is clearly depressed and soaking in misery. She is planning to spend the time mostly alone, in the deep winter cold. She is preparing to read books and to listen to podcasts. But her friend Mabel is visiting and she also prepares for that. Marin isn't sure she can really cope with the visit but they used to be best friends and they used to have a relationship. Marin has lost her grand
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Lillian in Love
By Sue Katz
Review by Kaolin on Tue, Nov 14th 2017.
Lillian in Love by Sue KatzLillian in Love is about an on-going romantic union between two women who have begun to come together to see if they can take their relationship to a higher level. One of the women, Lillian, had always been straight while the other, Sarah had identified as a lesbian all of her of her life. The cover of this 209 page romantic novel is extraordinary and a precursor for what is to come. Being in her eighties, 84 to be exact, Lillian moved to The Manor, a residence for seniors to be near Sarah. Lillian stays in a friend’s apartment at The Manor who has gone away for several weeks. One mig
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An American Sickness
How Healthcare Became Big Business and How You Can Take It Back
By Elisabeth Rosenthal
Review by Christian Perring on Tue, Nov 7th 2017.
An American Sickness by Elisabeth RosenthalIn An American Sickness, Elisabeth Rosenthal outlines the unscrupulous business practices of hospitals, doctors and insurance companies in the USA that result in massive medical bills for patients and often second-rate health care too. She is a doctor and now works as a medical journalist, and in An American Sickness she piles up the evidence for her case. There is shameless profiteering, exploiting of patients, deception, collusion, between the different health providers and the bureaucrats who run them. She powerfully presents medicine in the USA as a profession that has betrayed its roots a
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The Reflective Parent
How to Do Less and Relate More with Your Kids
By Regina Pally
Review by Hennie Weiss on Tue, Nov 7th 2017.
The Reflective Parent by Regina PallyThe Reflective Parent: How to Do Less and Relate More with Your Kids, by Regina Pally, takes the perspective of how to parent using reflective parenting, which as Pally describes it , is relationship based, and focuses on the mental skill of understanding what is going on inside the mind of a child, by listening, being open, and by also looking inside oneself, taking a step back from jumping to conclusions while attempting to be non-judgmental. Pally starts out with describing reflective parenting, and the 10 principles of the system. At the same time, Pally assures her readers that parenting
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Inclusive Ethics
Extending Beneficence and Egalitarian Justice
By Ingmar Persson
Review by Jonathan Lewis on Tue, Nov 7th 2017.
Inclusive Ethics by Ingmar Persson With his latest work, Ingmar Persson has developed extant ideas found in almost thirty publications produced during the last three decades. The result is an original, eclectic, highly provocative and, what he calls, 'revisionary' piece of morally-oriented thought, one that strives to be systematic (despite Persson acknowledging its limitations) and draws upon debates in biology, psychology, metaphysics and philosophy of mind in order to challenge commonly-held justifications and intuitions regarding moral concepts, ethical frameworks and the point of moral philosophy. (Critics would likely arg
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Mathematical Doodlings
By Geoffrey Marnell
Review by Karl Pfeifer on Tue, Nov 7th 2017.
Mathematical Doodlings by Geoffrey Marnell The mathematics of doodling is a very small subfield of mathematics, popularized by advocates like Ravi Vakil [1], [4]. Moreover, the renowned John Conway tells us his famous game of Sprouts, a game with significant mathematical properties, originated in some tea-time doodling with the aim of inventing a good paper-and-pencil game [2]. Also, doodles have a large presence in children's mathematical education, although there it is generally not because of their interesting mathematical properties; instead, the doodles are mainly eye-candy for the purpose of providing a context that's supposedly
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Extraordinary Science and Psychiatry
Responses to the Crisis in Mental Health Research
By Jeffrey Poland and Serife Tekin
Review by Anke Bueter, PhD on Tue, Oct 31st 2017.
Extraordinary Science and Psychiatry by Jeffrey Poland and Serife TekinFueled by the latest revision of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (APA 2013, DSM-5), psychiatric classification and the research based upon it have received an enormous amount of critical attention lately. Jeffrey Poland's and Serife Tekin's edited volume brings together different perspectives from philosophy and mental health research on these controversies. Surely, a certain amount of debate about a classification of mental disorders is expectable due to the complexity of the subject matter, as well as the impacts on science and clinical practice. Yet, the editors co
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Twilight of American Sanity
A Psychiatrist Analyzes the Age of Trump
By Allen Frances
Review by Christian Perring on Tue, Oct 31st 2017.
Twilight of American Sanity by Allen FrancesAllen Frances has a considerable reputation in psychiatry as one of the main architects of DSM-IV and one of the main critics of DSM-5, and especially some of the proposals for early drafts of DSM-5. He has an active Twitter feed, he used to write a blog for Psychology Today, and he also posted regularly for Psychiatric Times. In his new book he writes about the political crisis facing the USA with the terrible policies proposed by the White House and the incompetent leadership of the President. Frances writes at length of the many problems facing the world today and the ways in which the curr
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Deep Listening
A Healing Practice to Calm Your Body, Clear Your Mind, and Open Your Heart
By Jillian Pransky with Jessica Wolf
Review by Beth T. Cholette, Ph.D. on Tue, Oct 31st 2017.
Deep Listening by Jillian Pransky with Jessica WolfIn the opening chapter of this book, author Jillian Pransky describes the circumstances surrounding her first panic attack.  At that point in time, Pransky was already teaching yoga—an athletic, energetic style which had always suited her competitive nature.  But as her body neared exhaustion, Pransky found that she needed something different.  She sought out more mindful yoga practices, eventually becoming a restorative yoga instructor and a certified yoga therapist. In Deep Listening: A Healing Practice to Calm Your Body, Clear Your Mind, and Open Your Heart, Pransky pr
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