email page print pageAll Topic Reviews
A Theory of Feelings Addictions Memory and the Self"Intimate" Violence against Women1001 Solution-Focused Questions101 Healing Stories101 Things I Wish I'd Known When I Started Using Hypnosis50 Great Myths of Popular Psychology50 Reasons People Give for Believing in a God8 Keys to Body Brain BalanceA Brief History of Modern PsychologyA Conceptual History of PsychologyA Conceptual History of Psychology: Exploring the Tangled Web A Cooperative SpeciesA Guide to Teaching Introductory PsychologyA History of Modern Experimental PsychologyA History of Psychology in AutobiographyA History of Social PsychologyA History of the BrainA History of the MindA Hole in the HeadA Matter of SecurityA Mind of Its OwnA Natural History of Human ThinkingA Place for ConsciousnessA Short Introduction to Promoting Resilience in ChildrenA Social History of PsychologyA Stroll With William JamesA System Architecture Approach to the BrainA Theory of FreedomA Very Bad WizardAbductedAbout FacesAccounts of InnocenceAction, Emotion and WillAdapting MindsADHD & MeADHD in AdultsAdieu to GodAdolescence and Body ImageAdult Bipolar DisordersAdvances in Culture and PsychologyAdvances in Identity Theory and ResearchAffect Regulation, Mentalization, and the Development of SelfAffective MappingAgainst EmpathyAgainst HappinessAges and StagesAll Joy and No FunAll Out!All We Have to FearAlterations of ConsciousnessAmerican Psychiatric Publishing Textbook of Neuropsychiatry and Clinical NeurosciencesAn Argument for MindAncient Bodies, Modern LivesAnd BreatheAnimal MadnessAnimal Tool BehaviorAnimals in TranslationAnomalous CognitionAping MankindArtificial ConsciousnessAspects of PsychologismAsperger Syndrome and Your ChildAsperger Syndrome, Adolescence, and IdentityAssessment and Treatment of Childhood Problems, Second EditionAssisted Suicide and the Right to DieAttachedAttention is Cognitive UnisonAutism and the Myth of the Person AloneAutopsy of a Suicidal MindBecoming an Effective PsychotherapistBehavingBehavioral Genetics in the Postgenomic EraBeing No OneBelievingBetween Two WorldsBeyond AppearanceBeyond BlueBeyond BullyingBeyond MadnessBeyond MelancholyBeyond the BrainBeyond the DSM StoryBig DreamsBiofeedback for the BrainBipolar ChildrenBipolar DisorderBipolar KidsBlackwell Handbook of Childhood Cognitive DevelopmentBlind SpotsBlindsight & The Nature of ConsciousnessBlubberlandBlushBodiesBody ConsciousnessBody Image, Eating Disorders, and Obesity in YouthBody SenseBody WorkBorderline Personality DisorderBorderline Personality Disorder and the Conversational ModelBorn DigitalBorn to Be GoodBorn Together - Reared ApartBounceBoundaries in Human RelationshipsBounded RationalityBozo SapiensBrain and CultureBrain and the GazeBrain Arousal and Information TheoryBrain BugsBrain Change TherapyBrain Circuitry and Signaling in PsychiatryBrain FictionBrain, Mind, and Human Behavior in Contemporary Cognitive ScienceBrain-Based Therapy with AdultsBrain-WiseBrainstormBrainstormingBraintrustBrainwashingBrandedBreaking Murphy's LawBright-SidedBuddha's BrainBullying and TeasingBuyologyCan't You Hear Them?CaptureCare of the PsycheCartesian LinguisticsCartographies of the MindCerebrum 2007Cerebrum 2010Cerebrum 2015Cerebrum Anthology 2013Changing the SubjectCharacter Strengths and VirtuesCheating LessonsChild and Adolescent Psychological DisordersChildren’s Dreaming and the Development of Consciousness Chomsky NotebookClinical Psychiatry in Imperial GermanyClinical Psychology in Practice ClosureCognition and PerceptionCognition and the BrainCognitive BiologyCognitive DissonanceCognitive FictionsCognitive Mechanisms of Belief ChangeCognitive PragmaticsCognitive ScienceCognitive ScienceCognitive Systems and the Extended MindCognitive Therapy of Anxiety DisordersCognitive Unconscious and Human RationalityCold-Blooded KindnessComing of Age in Second LifeCommunication Issues In Autism And Asperger SyndromeCompassion and Healing in Medicine and SocietyComplementary and Alternative Therapies ResearchComprehending ColumbineConfessions of a SociopathConquering Shame and CodependencyConsciousnessConsciousnessConsciousnessConsciousnessConsciousnessConsciousness ConsciousnessConsciousness and Its Place in NatureConsciousness and LanguageConsciousness and Mental LifeConsciousness and MindConsciousness and the NovelConsciousness and the Social BrainConsciousness EmergingConsciousness RecoveredConsciousness RevisitedConsciousness, Self-Consciousness, and the Science of Being HumanConstructing PainConsumer NeuroscienceContemporary Debates in Cognitive ScienceConversations on ConsciousnessConviction of the InnocentCooperation and Its EvolutionCreating a Life of Meaning and CompassionCredit and BlameCritical New Perspectives on Attention Deficit/Hyperactivity DisorderCritical PsychologyCritical Thinking About PsychologyCross-Cultural PsychologyCrowdsourcingCrueltyCultural Assessment in Clinical PsychiatryCuriousDamasio's Error and Descartes' TruthDangerous and Severe Personality DisorderDaniel DennettDaughters of MadnessDeafness In MindDeath and ConsciousnessDeath of a ParentDecomposing the WillDeep Brain StimulationDeep ChinaDefining DifferenceDefining Psychopathology in the 21st CenturyDelusion and Self-DeceptionDelusions of GenderDennett and Ricoeur on the Narrative SelfDeparting from DevianceDescartes' BabyDescartes's Changing MindDescribing Inner Experience?Desert Islands and Other Texts (1953-1974)Destructive EmotionsDevelopment of Geocentric Spatial Language and CognitionDevelopment of PsychopathologyDialogues on DifferenceDid My Neurons Make Me Do It?Digital HemlockDirty MindsDisgust and Its DisordersDisorders of VolitionDo Apes Read Minds?Do Fish Feel Pain?Does Consciousness Cause Behavior?Doing without ConceptsDrunk Tank PinkEducating People to Be Emotionally IntelligentEffective IntentionsEffective Writing in PsychologyEffortless AttentionEmbodied Minds in ActionEmbracing MindEmbracing UncertaintyEmotion and ConsciousnessEmotion ExperienceEmotion RegulationEmotion, Evolution, And RationalityEmotional IntelligenceEmotionally InvolvedEmotionsEmotionsEmotions and LifeEmotions in Humans and ArtifactsEmotions RevealedEmotions, Aggression, and Morality in ChildrenEmotions, Stress, and HealthEmpathyEnjoymentErotic MoralityEscape Your Own PrisonEssays in Social NeuroscienceEssential Sources in the Scientific Study of ConsciousnessEthical Issues in Forensic Mental Health ResearchEthically Challenged ProfessionsEveryday Mind ReadingEvidence for PsiEvidence-Based Mental Health PracticeEvil MenEvolution and Human BehaviorEvolution and LearningEvolution, Games, and GodEvolution, Gender, and RapeEvolutionary Psychology and ViolenceEvolutionary Psychology as Maladapted PsychologyExacting BeautyExperiences of DepressionExperimenterExplaining the BrainExplaining the BrainExplorations in Neuroscience, Psychology and ReligionExploring TranssexualismExpression and the InnerExtending Self-Esteem ResearchExtraordinary BeliefsFact and Value in EmotionFaking ItFatigue as a Window to the BrainFavorite Activities for the Teaching of PsychologyFeeling GoodFeeling Pain and Being in PainFeelings and EmotionsFinding Meaning, Facing FearsFitting In Is OverratedFive Constraints on Predicting BehaviorFlourishingFlow: The Psychology of Optimal ExperienceFolk Psychological NarrativesFooling HoudiniForever YoungFormulation in Psychology and PsychotherapyFoucault, Psychology and the Analytics of PowerFoundational Issues in Human Brain MappingFoundations of Psychological ThoughtFree Will as an Open Scientific ProblemFreedom And NeurobiologyFreedom EvolvesFrom Axons to IdentityFrom Madness to Mental HealthFrom Neurons to Self-ConsciousnessFrom Passions to EmotionsFrom Philosophy to PsychotherapyFrom Symptom to SynapseFrontiers of ConsciousnessGay, Straight, and the Reason WhyGenerosityGenes, Environment, and PsychopathologyGenetic Nature/CultureGeniusGetting Under the SkinGlued to GamesGoing SaneGot Parts?Group GeniusGrowing Up GirlGuilt, Shame, and AnxietyGut ReactionsHallucinationHandbook New Sexuality StudiesHandbook of Closeness and IntimacyHandbook of Critical PsychologyHandbook of Emotion RegulationHandbook of EmotionsHandbook of Personality DisordersHandbook of PsychopathyHandbook of Self and IdentityHandbook of Self and IdentityHandbook of Spatial CognitionHappinessHappinessHappinessHappinessHappiness at WorkHappiness Is.Happy at LastHard to GetHardwired BehaviorHatredHealing the SplitHidden ResourcesHope and DespairHot ThoughtHot ThoughtHouse and PsychologyHow Animals Affect UsHow Animals GrieveHow Can the Human Mind Occur in the Physical Universe?How Doctors ThinkHow Enlightenment Changes Your BrainHow Families Still MatterHow History Made the MindHow Infants Know MindsHow Many Friends Does One Person Need?How People ChangeHow Professors ThinkHow The Body Shapes The MindHow the Body Shapes the Way We ThinkHow the Mind Explains BehaviorHow the Mind Uses the BrainHow to Change Someone You LoveHow We ReasonHow We RememberHughes' Outline of Modern PsychiatryHumanHuman BondingHuman Reasoning and Cognitive ScienceHypnotismHysteriaiBrainIdentifying Hyperactive ChildrenIdentifying the MindiDisorderImagination and the Meaningful BrainImitation and the Social MindImpulse Control DisordersImpulsivityIn an Unspoken VoiceIn Defense of SentimentalityIn DoubtIn Search of HappinessIn the Wake of 9/11Individual and Collective Memory ConsolidationInner Experience and NeuroscienceInner PresenceInside the American CoupleIntegrated Behavioral Health CareIntegrating Evolution and DevelopmentIntegrating Psychotherapy and PharmacotherapyIntegrity and the Fragile SelfIntellectual DisabilityIntelligenceIntelligence, Destiny, and EducationIntentions and IntentionalityInterdependent MindsInterpreting MindsInto the Minds of MadmenIntoxicating MindsIntrospection VindicatedIntuitionInventing PersonalityInvestigating the Psychological WorldIrrationalityIs There Anything Good About Men?Issues for Families, Schools and CommunitiesJane Sexes It UpJoint AttentionJoint AttentionJudgment and Decision MakingJust a DogJust BabiesJuvenile-Onset SchizophreniaKarl JaspersKey Thinkers in PsychologyKidding OurselvesKids of CharacterKilling MonstersLack of CharacterLanguage OriginsLanguage, Consciousness, CultureLanguage, Vision, and MusicLaw, Mind and BrainLess Than HumanLet Kids Be KidsLet's Talk About DeathLiving NarrativeLiving with Mild Cognitive ImpairmentLonelinessLooking for SpinozaLossLOT 2Love at Goon ParkMachine ConsciousnessMacrocognitionMade for Each OtherMadnessMadness and Modernism: Insanity in the light of modern art, literature, and thought Making a Good Brain GreatMaking Habits, Breaking HabitsMaking Minds and MadnessMaking Up the MindMale SexualityMan and WomanMan's Search for MeaningMan, Beast, and ZombieManic MindsManlinessMapping the MindMarking the MindMarvelous Learning AnimalMasculinity Studies and Feminist TheoryMeaningMeaning, Mortality, and ChoiceMedical MusesMeditating SelflesslyMeetings with a Remarkable ManMemoryMemory and DreamsMemory and EmotionMemory And UnderstandingMental BiologyMental IllnessMental Time TravelMetacognitionMetacognition and Theory of MindMethods in MindMindMindMind and BrainMind and ConsciousnessMind Games:Mind in LifeMind TimeMind to MindMind, Brain and the Elusive SoulMindful AngerMindfulnessMindfulnessMindfulness and AcceptanceMindfulness-Based Treatment Approaches: Clinician's Guide to Evidence Base and ApplicationsMinding AnimalsMinding MindsMindreadersMindreading AnimalsMinds, Brains, and LawMindsightMindworldsMirrors in the BrainMistakes Were Made (But Not by Me)Models of MadnessMoodMoral Development and RealityMoral MindsMoral Psychology, Volume 1Moral Psychology, Volume 2Moral Psychology, Volume 3Mothers and OthersMotivation and Cognitive ControlMotivational Interviewing: Preparing People For ChangeMovies and the MindMulticulturalism and the Therapeutic ProcessMultiplicityMuses, Madmen, and ProphetsMy Family AlbumMyths about SuicideNarrative IdentitiesNarrative PsychiatryNarratives in PsychiatryNaturalizing Intention in ActionNature and NarrativeNature Via NurtureNeither Bad nor MadNerveNeurobiology and the Development of Human MoralityNeurochemistry of ConsciousnessNeurodiversityNeuroethicsNeuroLogicNeurological Foundations of Cognitive Neuroscience Neuroscience and PhilosophyNo Child Left DifferentNo Two AlikeNot By Genes AloneNot Much Just Chillin'Not So Abnormal PsychologyNurturing the Older Brain and MindOn AnxietyOn Being an Introvert or Highly Sensitive PersonOn Being HumanOn Being MovedOn Deep History and the BrainOn DesireOn KillingOn Nature and LanguageOn PaedophiliaOn PersonalityOn the Frontier of AdulthoodOn the Origins of Cognitive ScienceOn The Stigma Of Mental IllnessOnflowOpen MindsOpening Skinner's BoxOrigin of MindOrigins of PsychopathologyOther MindsOut of Our HeadsOut of the WoodsOvercoming Depersonalization DisorderPanpsychism and the Religious AttitudePanpsychism in the WestParenting and the Child's WorldPassionate EnginesPathologies of the WestPatient-Based Approaches to Cognitive NeurosciencePediatric PsychopharmacologyPeople Types and Tiger StripesPerception & CognitionPerception beyond InferencePerception, Hallucination, and IllusionPersonal Development and Clinical PsychologyPerspectives on ImitationPhantoms in the BrainPhenomenal Concepts and Phenomenal KnowledgePhenomenology and Philosophy of MindPhilosophical Foundations of NeurosciencePhilosophical MidwiferyPhilosophy and HappinessPhilosophy of PsychologyPhilosophy, Neuroscience and ConsciousnessPhrenologyPhysical RealizationPhysics in MindPieces of LightPlaying with FirePositive PsychologyPositive PsychologyPostcards from the Brain MuseumPostpsychiatryPosttraumatic Stress DisorderPoverty and Brain Development During ChildhoodPractical Ethics for PsychologistsPractical Management of Personality DisorderPractical Management of Personality DisorderPredicative MindsPredictably IrrationalPreference, Belief, and SimilarityPrenatal Testosterone in MindPrivileged AccessProcess-Based CBTProcrastinationProust Was a NeuroscientistPsychiatric SlaveryPsychiatry as Cognitive NeurosciencePsychiatry, Psychoanalysis, And The New Biology Of MindPsychological AgencyPsychological Concepts and Biological PsychiatryPsychological Dimensions of the SelfPsychologists Defying the CrowdPsychologyPsychologyPsychology and Consumer CulturePsychology and LawPsychology and the Question of AgencyPsychology for ScreenwritersPsychology of Women: A Handbook of Issues and TheoriesPsychology's GhostsPsychology's Interpretive TurnPsychology's TerritoriesPsychopathologyPsychopathyPsychosis and EmotionPsychotherapy, American Culture, and Social PolicyPutnam CampPutting a Name to ItQuantum Memory PowerQuietRadical DistortionRadical Embodied Cognitive ScienceRadical ExternalismRadical GraceRapeRe-Visioning PsychiatryReal MaterialismReality CheckReconstructing Reason and RepresentationReconstructing the Cognitive WorldRecovery in Mental IllnessRecreative MindsRedirectReducing Adolescent RiskRegulating EmotionsRelational BeingRelational Mental HealthRelational Suicide AssessmentReliability in Cognitive NeuroscienceRemembering HomeRemembering Our ChildhoodResearch Advances in Genetics and GenomicsResearching Children's ExperienceResilience in ChildrenRestoring ResilienceRethinking ADHDRethinking Learning DisabilitiesRethinking Middle YearsRethinking the Western Understanding of the SelfRevolution in PsychologyRoadmap to ResilienceRomance and Sex in Adolescence and Emerging AdulthoodSchizophrenia RevealedSchizophrenia, Culture, and SubjectivityScience and Pseudoscience in Clinical PsychologyScience and Pseudoscience in Clinical PsychologySecond NatureSecond NatureSecond That EmotionSecond-order Change in PsychotherapySecrets of the MindSee What I'm SayingSee What I'm SayingSeeing and VisualizingSeeing RedSelf and SocietySelf Comes to MindSelf Control in Society, Mind, and BrainSelf-Awareness Deficits in Psychiatric PatientsSelf-CompassionSelf-RegulationSelf-Representational Approaches to ConsciousnessSelfless InsightSelvesSerial KillersSex at DawnSex on the BrainSex, Time and PowerSexual Coercion in Primates and HumansSexual DisordersSexual FluiditySexual ReckoningsSexualized BrainsShame and GuiltShatteredSimulating MindsSisyphus's BoulderSNAPSocial NeuroscienceSocial NeuroscienceSocial NeuroscienceSocial Psychology and DiscourseSome We Love, Some We Hate, Some We EatSoul DustSparkSpiral of EntrapmentSplendors and Miseries of the BrainSports Hypnosis in PracticeStanding at Water's EdgeStich and His CriticsStillpowerStop OverreactingStructure and Agency in Everyday LifeStructures of AgencyStuffStumbling on HappinessSubjectivity and SelfhoodSubstance Abuse and EmotionSupersizing the MindSweet DreamsSynaptic SelfTales from Both Sides of the BrainTalking Oneself SoberTalking to BabiesTaming the Troublesome ChildTargeting AutismTeaching Problems and the Problems of TeachingTeleological RealismTen Years of Viewing from WithinTestosterone RexThat's DisgustingThe 5 Elements of Effective ThinkingThe Accidental MindThe Age of EmpathyThe Altruism EquationThe Altruistic BrainThe American Psychiatric Publishing Textbook of Clinical PsychiatryThe Anatomy of BiasThe Anxious BrainThe Archaeology of MindThe Art and Science of MindfulnessThe Art InstinctThe Art of HypnosisThe Asymmetrical BrainThe Bifurcation of the SelfThe Big Book of ConceptsThe Big DisconnectThe Birth of IntersubjectivityThe Birth of the MindThe Blackwell Handbook of Organizational Learning and Knowledge ManagementThe Blank SlateThe Body Has a Mind of Its OwnThe Bounds of CognitionThe Boy Who Was Raised as a DogThe BrainThe BrainThe Brain and the Meaning of LifeThe Brain SupremacyThe Brain That Changes ItselfThe Brain's Way of HealingThe Brain: Big Bangs, Behaviors, and BeliefsThe Cambridge Handbook of Cognitive ScienceThe Cambridge Handbook of Situated CognitionThe Character of ConsciousnessThe Chemistry Between UsThe Choice EffectThe Clinical Science of Suicide PreventionThe Cognitive Approach to Conscious MachinesThe Cognitive Behavioral Workbook for Anxiety: A Step-By-Step ProgramThe Cognitive NeurosciencesThe Cognitive-Emotional BrainThe College Fear FactorThe Commercialization of Intimate LifeThe Compass of PleasureThe Concepts of ConsciousnessThe Conscious BrainThe Conscious SelfThe Consuming InstinctThe Creating BrainThe Creative BrainThe Crucible of ConsciousnessThe Crucible of ExperienceThe Cure WithinThe Dao of NeuroscienceThe Developing MindThe Developing MindThe Development of PsychopathologyThe Disappearance of the Social in American Social PsychologyThe Dissolution of MindThe Duty to ProtectThe Educated ParentThe Ego TunnelThe Elephant in the RoomThe Embodied Mind: Cognitive Science and Human ExperienceThe Emotional Journey of the Alzheimer's FamilyThe Encultured BrainThe Encyclopedia of StupidityThe Enduring Self in People with Alzheimer'sThe Epidemiology of SchizophreniaThe Essential DifferenceThe Ethical BrainThe Evolution of BeautyThe Evolution of ChildhoodThe Evolution of CooperationThe Evolution of LanguageThe Evolution of MindThe Evolving BrainThe Executive BrainThe Faces of TerrorismThe Feeling BrainThe Feeling of What HappensThe First IdeaThe Folly of FoolsThe Folly of FoolsThe Folly of FoolsThe Foundations of Cognitive ArchaeologyThe Fundamentalist MindsetThe GapThe Gender TrapThe Geography of BlissThe Gift of ShynessThe Good LifeThe Good LifeThe Happiness HypothesisThe Happiness of PursuitThe Health Psychology HandbookThe Healthy Aging BrainThe High Price of MaterialismThe History of PsychologyThe Human FaceThe Human SparkThe Hypomanic EdgeThe Imagery DebateThe Immeasurable MindThe Imprinted BrainThe Incredible Shrinking MindThe Innate MindThe Innate MindThe Integrated SelfThe Intentional BrainThe Language of ThoughtThe Languages of the BrainThe Lexicon of Adlerian PsychologyThe Lie DetectorsThe Lives of the BrainThe Lonely AmericanThe Lust for BloodThe Madness of WomenThe Male BrainThe Man Who Lost His LanguageThe Man Who Shocked the WorldThe Man Who Tasted ShapesThe Man Who Wasn't ThereThe Matter of the MindThe Mature MindThe Mean Girl MotiveThe Meaning of EvilThe Meaning of OthersThe Meaning of the BodyThe Measure of MadnessThe Measure of MindThe Medicalization of Everyday LifeThe Mind and the BrainThe Mind in ContextThe Mind of the ChildThe Mind of the HorseThe Mind's EyeThe Mind, the Body and the WorldThe Mind-Gut ConnectionThe Mindful BrainThe Misleading MindThe Moral MindThe Most Dangerous AnimalThe Most Human HumanThe Mother FactorThe Myth of ChoiceThe Myth of Depression as DiseaseThe Myth of Mirror NeuronsThe Myth of Self HelpThe Myth of Self-EsteemThe Myth of the Spoiled ChildThe Nature of the SelfThe Necessity Of MadnessThe Neuro RevolutionThe Neuron and the MindThe Neuropsychology of the UnconsciousThe Neuroscience of Human RelationshipsThe Neuroscience of PsychotherapyThe Neuroscience of Psychotherapy: Healing the Social BrainThe New BrainThe New Science of DreamingThe New Science of the MindThe New UnconsciousThe Normal PersonalityThe Origins of FairnessThe Overflowing BrainThe Oxford Companion to the MindThe Oxford Handbook of Philosophy of MindThe Paradoxical PrimateThe Perfectionist's HandbookThe Peripheral MindThe Phenomenology ReaderThe Philosopher's Secret FireThe Philosophical BabyThe Political MindThe Politics of HappinessThe Positive Side of Negative EmotionsThe Postnational SelfThe Postpartum EffectThe Power of PlayThe Praeger Handbook of TranssexualityThe Present Moment in Psychotherapy and Everyday LifeThe Primate MindThe Prism of GrammarThe Psychobiology of Trauma and Resilience Across the LifespanThe Psychological Construction of EmotionThe Psychology of Good and EvilThe Psychology of Good and EvilThe Psychology of HappinessThe Psychology of LifestyleThe Psychology of Religious FundamentalismThe Psychology of Science and the Origins of the Scientific MindThe Psychology of Science and the Origins of the Scientific MindThe Psychology of SpiritualityThe Psychology of StereotypingThe Psychology of SuperheroesThe Psychophysiology of Self-AwarenessThe Pursuit of PerfectThe Quest for Mental HealthThe Rational ImaginationThe Ravenous BrainThe Reasons of LoveThe Righteous MindThe Routledge Companion to Philosophy of PsychologyThe Routledge Companion to Philosophy of PsychologyThe Science of EvilThe Science of Intimate RelationshipsThe Science of Shame and its Treatment The Second SelfThe Secret History of EmotionThe Secret Lives of BoysThe Self and Its EmotionsThe Self-Sabotage CycleThe Sense of SelfThe Sensitive SelfThe Shape of ThoughtThe Social AnimalThe Social Nature of Mental IllnessThe Social Neuroscience of EmpathyThe Social Psychology of Good and EvilThe Social Psychology of MoralityThe Social Psychology of MoralityThe Story of Intellectual DisabilityThe Structure of ThinkingThe Survivors ClubThe Talking ApeThe Teenage BrainThe Tell-Tale BrainThe Temperamental ThreadThe Tender CutThe Tending InstinctThe Time ParadoxThe Trauma MythThe Trauma of Psychological TortureThe Trauma of Psychological TortureThe Trouble with IllnessThe True PathThe Truth About GriefThe Turing TestThe Uncertain SciencesThe Undoing ProjectThe Unhappy ChildThe Upside of IrrationalityThe War for Children's MindsThe Well-Tuned BrainThe Wild Girl, Natural Man, and the MonsterThe Winner's BrainThe Wisdom in FeelingThe Woman RacketThe World in My Mind, My Mind in the WorldThe Wow ClimaxThe Yipping TigerThemes, Issues and Debates in PsychologyTheoretical Issues in Psychology: An IntroductionTheory of AddictionTheory of MindThings and PlacesThink CatThink Confident, Be ConfidentThinking about AddictionThinking and SeeingThis Emotional Life: In Search of Ourselves...and HappinessThought and LanguageThought in a Hostile WorldTo Have and To Hurt:Toward an Evolutionary Biology of LanguageToward Replacement Parts for the BrainTrauma and Human ExistenceTrauma, Tragedy, TherapyTreating Attachment DisordersTreating Self-InjuryTreating Self-Injury: A Practical GuideTrue to Our FeelingsTrusting the Subject?Understanding and Treating Borderline Personality DisorderUnderstanding ConsciousnessUnderstanding ParanoiaUnderstanding PeopleUnderstanding TerrorismUndoing Perpetual StressUnlock the Genius WithinUnsettled MindsUnstrange MindsUnthinkingUnthoughtUs and ThemViolent PartnersVirtue, Vice, and PersonalityVision and MindVisual AgnosiaWarrior's DishonourWe Who Are DarkWednesday Is Indigo BlueWelcome to Your BrainWhat Do Women Want?What Dying People WantWhat Have We DoneWhat Intelligence Tests MissWhat Is an Emotion: Classic and Contemporary ReadingsWhat Is Emotion?What is Intelligence?What Is Mental Illness?What Is Thought?What Makes Your Brain Happy and Why You Should Do the Opposite What the Best College Students DoWhat the Dog SawWhat We Know about Emotional IntelligenceWhat We Say MattersWhat's Wrong With Morality?When Boys Become BoysWhen Perfect Isn't Good EnoughWhen the Impossible HappensWhen Walls Become DoorwaysWho's Been Sleeping in Your HeadWho's in Charge?Why Humans Like to CryWhy Love MattersWhy Lyrics LastWhy People CooperateWhy People Die by SuicideWhy Sex Matters: A Darwinian Look at Human BehaviorWhy Smart People Can Be So StupidWhy the Mind is Not a ComputerWhy Us?Why We LieWhy We LoveWhy We SleepWider than the SkyWilliam James at the BoundariesWilling, Wanting, WaitingWittgenstein And PsychologyWomen and Child Sexual AbuseWorking MindsYoga and PsychologyYou Are What You RememberYoung Minds in Social WorldsYour Brain on CubsYour Brain on FoodYour Brain on Food: How Chemicals Control Your Thoughts and Feelings,Your Brain on YogaYour Child in the BalanceZombies and Consciousness
The promotional insert included in my review copy of David A. Kessler's Capture: Unraveling the Mystery of Mental Suffering, declares that it is "a book bolder than anything yet written on mental illness and suffering." Even by the standards of promotional hyperbole, this is a silly claim, and it takes only a little knowledge of the history of theory about mental disorder to see that it is plain false. The book's supposed boldness stems from its advocacy of a unified theory of mental disorder, one which claims that all psychiatric phenomena stem from a single type of cognitive cause. Kessler states the view as follows: "a stimulus -- a place, a thought, a memory, a person -- takes hold of our attention and shifts our perception. Once our attention becomes increasingly focused on this stimulus, the way we think and feel, and often what we do, may not be what we consciously want. I have termed this mechanism 'capture'" (7). There are two primary complaints to be made concerning the way the claim is presented. First, Kessler (along with the marketing team at Harper Wave, his publication house) seems to not know that the hypothesis that all madness is a form of monomania was quite popular among French physicians of the early 19th century (cf. Hacking 1990, chapter 8). He certainly never acknowledges that view or attempts to distinguish his own from it. Even so, this book is written for a popular audience and so it may be forgivable that his discussion of historical precursors is brief, confined to William James's account of attention and Freud's theory of drives. The second complaint is more consequential, for though he claims to offer a theory of mental disorder, one very quickly realizes that Kessler has no idea how to construct anything of the sort. Capture does not offer a theory of anything; it is a scattershot assemblage of anecdotes and case studies, with loose associations drawn between them and a dash of inconclusive neuroscience tossed in for good measure. This being the case, there is little to recommend in the book, either for those already familiar with the literature on the topic or those looking for an accessible introduction to it.
To explore the ways in which Capture fails to live to up to its billing, one must examine the conditions on its success, and so one should ask what a genuine theory of mental disorder ought to look like. A theory of a phenomenon does many things, but a minimal condition on the adequacy of any theory is that it explain why the phenomenon in question exists. On a view of explanation espoused by Van Fraassen (1980) and others, this entails contrasting that phenomenon to other relevant possibilities. So, for any phenomenon X that we wish to explain, it is not sufficient to merely give a causal account of X's origin; rather, the account must be such that it is clear why X obtained rather than some Y. Applying this insight to the explanation of psychopathology, it can be seen that to merely give a causal account of a disorder's characteristic symptom set is insufficient to explain the phenomenon. A true explanation of disorder will make clear that the causal agents appealed to had to (or at least were far more likely to) result in that disorder as opposed to some other, or, indeed, rather than some non-disordered psychological profile. This is not to say that one must draw an absolute, categorical distinction between mental health and mental disorder. The notion that there is a continuum between healthy and disordered psychology goes as far back as Freud (1901/1965) and has recently been taken up by new advocates (e.g. Bortolotti 2010). But the continuum view does not entail that there is no distinction at all to be drawn between the etiologies of individual disorders or between a disordered and a healthy mental life. It does say that the same behavioral or cognitive traits may be symptomatic of pathology in some contexts and relatively innocuous in others. And so a theory which posits a continuum between psychopathology and normal psychology had better give an account of the contextual factors which determine a trait's transition from personality quirk to symptom. A theory which cannot do that, or explain why symptom sets develop into characteristic groupings, is no theory at all. In order to be successful, Kessler would have to show that positing attentional capture as a common cause of all mental disorder is sufficient to explain the difference between disordered and healthy psychology, and to account for the array of distinct ways in which a person can be mentally disordered. Unfortunately, his theory is simply incapable of passing this test, as can be seen from examination of the case studies which constitute the vast majority of the evidence adduced in favor of his view.
Consider his example of manic psychosis, the American poet Robert Lowell (99-102). (Writers loom large in Kessler's case studies, with Kafka, Dostoyevsky, Plath, Sexton, Woolf, Hemingway, Robert Graves, Tennessee Williams, and William Styron also receiving cursory armchair analyses. David Foster Wallace -- American literature's tragic hero du jour -- earns a dedicated chapter and segments of others. By midway through Kessler's book, one might be surprised to hear of a distinguished writer from the past century who managed to make it through life untouched by the specter of psychopathology.) He suggests, without explicitly claiming it, that Lowell's mania was a function of the contents of his peculiar attentional fixation, specifically, absolute conviction in his own literary brilliance. Lowell, by his own account, had fallen under the spell of the delusion that he was recipient of a divinely ordained mission to rescue the United States from incipient degeneracy. Maybe it is true, then, that Lowell's inflated self-worth conditioned the contents of his delusion but his is still a classic case of grandiosity and not a particularly unique one. In fact, grandiose delusions manifest within a wide range of contexts that include mania like Lowell's, but also paranoid schizophrenia, a disorder with a much different affective profile. Nevertheless, Kessler writes as though conviction in one's status as redeemer of the union could not but fill one with such exuberant energy that one would necessarily go sprinting through the streets of Bloomington, Indiana, in the nude (99). If the causal account here seems spurious, that is because it should, but it is important to observe that it is the only one Kessler, having committed himself to the idea that attentional fixation is the ultimate cause of all mental disorder, could give to the question of why symptoms cluster together into the unique groups that they do. On his theory, every element of a disorder's characteristic symptom set must be seen as occurring after and because of attentional abnormality. Thus, his case studies are shot through with creative reinterpretation. He proposes that Anne Sexton's depression was the intermediate link between an unhealthy obsession with death and her eventual suicide (74-77), though it seems prima facie far more plausible that obsession with death was an effect of her depression which, in turn, helped bring about her suicide. Did Plath's obsession with her dead father (102-107) necessarily lead to her own depression and suicide? Kessler seems to think so, even though he expends several pages worth of words detailing Kafka's own paternal obsession, one which did not lead to suicide (48-51). Indeed, nowhere in his analysis is there any indication that Kafka was mentally ill at all, unless one counts as evidence the intuition that the mind which gave us such paranoid classics as The Metamorphosis and The Trial must have had something at least a little odd going on in it. Sure, the American painter Jay DeFeo spent eight years and nearly 2,000 gallons of paint on her masterpiece, The Rose (72-74), but so what? Did she at any point cross the threshold from good old-fashioned determination to realize her artistic vision into pathological fixation? Kessler gives us no clear indication that she did but he seems to think something unhealthy was up. What it was, we do not know. It is ironic that, when reading a book which presumes to shed light on a supposedly mysterious topic, one does not get very far before discovering that if Kessler is right then the phenomenon is far more mysterious -- and potentially intractably so -- than if he is wrong.
Again, it should be reiterated that I do not have a quarrel with the type of view that Kessler presents, but rather with the fact that he seems not to know what would counts as evidence in its favor. He can neither convincingly say how attentional abnormality characteristic of mental disorder is distinguished from the sort of monomania which is innocuous and perhaps even beneficial in the context of one's lifestyle, nor how symptom sets diverge across the spectrum of disorder. A similar problem is present on the few occasions when he takes a break from opining on the sad lives of the great writers -- or recounting the violent deeds of various religious fanatics, all of whom, alarmingly, have Middle Eastern-sounding names (184-204) -- to dabble in discussions of experimental evidence. Kessler seems to find it sufficient for his purpose to take notice of neurological similarities found across various different disorders. He observes that several are associated with dysregulated dopamine functionality and that dopamine has been hypothesized to underlie perception of environmental salience, which, in turn, can be understood as a key determinant of attentional direction (e.g. Kapur 2003; Howes and Kapur 2009). He is not on entirely shaky ground here; the connection between salience detection and motivational circuitry in addiction, for example, is well documented, and he is correct to point out that the most effective antipsychotic medications available work by modulating dopamine functionality. The problem with this evidence is that it is consistent with a vast array of roles for attentional abnormality in the etiology of mental disorder other than ultimate cause. Indeed, the very theory of psychosis he references for proof of the role of attention in the disorder postulates that delusions are formed rather late in its etiology, as a way for those who experience abnormal salience perception to understanding the resultant bizarre phenomenology. It is unclear whether Kessler does not notice that this way of conceptualizing the etiology of psychosis conflicts with his own view -- on which, to reiterate, any additional symptomatology must be "sequelae" to the contents of one's captured attention (118) -- or merely ignores the fact. Nevertheless, the conflict is there and provides ample reason to be skeptical of the view that he asserts.
Even if one is charitable to Kessler, acknowledging that he is right about the role of salience in psychosis -- he is -- and merely understands it in a naïve way -- he does -- there is still the problem of generality. Kessler claims that all mental disorder can be explained by capture, and this entails that all mental disorder ought to be equally receptive to the same sorts of treatment. Thus, having decided that salience detection and attention capture are the same thing, he claims, without citation, that anxiety and depressive disorders respond "equally well" to antipsychotic medications. This is followed with a recitation of the litany of conditions for which antidepressants have been approved. He does not mention that many therapies for mental disorder are more efficacious than medication and some of them are based on theories which place attention later in the etiological chain than his does. Consider exposure therapy for anxiety, which is based upon the idea that disordered anxiety results from learned fear responses and that such learning can be undone by new experience with the stimulus (cf. LeDoux 2015, chapter 11). Attention is, of course, involved in disordered anxiety, for once a person has been conditioned to perceive a stimulus as threatening, the reflexive anxiety response attendant to that stimulus will monopolize the person's attention. But this model posits heightened attention as an aftereffect of anxiety rather than its cause. One can put further pressure on Kessler's attempt at causal unification by observing that one would not prescribe exposure therapy to a person with depression. There the problem is not what associations one has learned for a stimulus, but the emotional valence with which it is perceived in the first place. Kessler is correct to point out the tendency among individuals with depression to ruminate on negative stimuli, but it is also true that they tend to interpret as negatively valenced stimuli which non-depressive people would consider neutral or even positive, and it is not obvious which of these phenomena, if either, has priority in the etiology of the symptom set. So, even if we could say for certain that the neural correlates of attention behave peculiarly in depressed people, this still would not be enough to show that attentional abnormality causes whatever symptoms follow. This is precisely the case for anxiety disorder. Considered out of context, we might find heightened activity in the neural circuitry of attention surprising and afford it a causal role in our theory of anxiety, but taken in the context of what we know from other avenues of research into the phenomenon, it is not surprising at all. Indeed, the evidence from exposure therapy tells us that even when we do correlate anxiety with the neural signature of attention, it will be a mistake to infer that such activity is the ultimate cause of the disorder.
It is a trope in books written for the popular science market, as this one was, to propose (or evangelize for) a unified theory of some phenomena previously believed to be disparate or irreconcilable. Sometimes such books are written by disciplinary insiders as primers on the current state of thought in their fields. Brian Greene's popular series on string theory is a case in point. David A. Kessler is not a psychiatric insider and, if anything, his overreliance on hastily interpreted anecdotal evidence suggests that he has little grounding in current research into mental disorder. Perhaps, though, the evidential problems of Capture can be forgiven and a broader lesson about theory building (in any area of science) can be taken from the book's failure. Unified theories are popular because they are elegant and reduce complex phenomena down to a manageable set of fundamental principles. But sometimes phenomena really are complex, and sometimes they are intractably so. For such phenomena, demystification depends upon acknowledgement of their intrinsic complexity, rather than manipulating them into prefabricated theoretical frameworks. Artificial simplification will simply serve to obscure their true natures. I suspect that this is the case for mental disorder, a broad category which includes a large array of psychological phenomena, some of which have common features and causes and some of which are quite distinct from one another. The threat of obfuscation is particularly dangerous for psychiatric phenomena because they cause pain, suffering, and, indeed, death. To effectively deal with mental disorder, it is necessary to have a clear understanding of its nature and causes. Books such as Kessler's, which are ill-informed and poorly conceived only detract from that aim.
Bortolotti, L. (2010). Delusions and Other Irrational Beliefs. New York: Oxford University Press.
Freud, S. (1990). The Psychopathology of Everyday Life. New York: W. W. Norton & Company.
Hacking, I. (1990). The Taming of Chance. New York: Cambridge University Press.
Howes, O. D., & Kapur, S. (2009). The dopamine hypothesis of schizophrenia: version III--the final common pathway. Schizophrenia Bulletin, 35(3), 549--562.
Kapur, S. (2003). Psychosis as a state of aberrant salience: a framework linking biology, phenomenology, and pharmacology in schizophrenia. The American Journal of Psychiatry, 160(1), 13--23.
Kessler, D. A., M. D. (2016). Capture: Unraveling the Mystery of Mental Suffering. New York: Harper Wave.
LeDoux, J. (2016). Anxious: Using the Brain to Understand and Treat Fear and Anxiety. New York: Penguin Books.
Fraassen, B. C. van. (1980). The Scientific Image. New York: Clarendon Press.
© 2016 Christopher Parker
Christopher Parker, University of Cincinnati