How to Rethink Psychology
New metaphors for understanding people and their behavior
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Based on the author’s forty years of experience in psychology, philosophy, and the social sciences, How to Rethink Psychology argues that to understand people we need to know more about their contexts than the dominant modes of thinking and research presently allow. Drawing upon insights from sources as diverse as Freud, CBT, quantum physics, and Zen philosophy, the book offers several fascinating new metaphors for thinking about people and, in doing so, endeavors to create a psychology for the future.
The book begins by discussing the significance of the key metaphor underlying mainstream psychology today – the ‘particle’ or ‘causal’ metaphor – and explains the need for a shift towards new ‘wave’ or ‘contextual’ metaphors in order to appreciate how individual and social actions truly function. It explores new metaphors for thinking about the relationship between language and reality, and teaches the reader how they might reimagine the processes involved in the act of thinking itself. The book concludes with a consideration of how these new metaphors might be applied to practical methods of research and understanding change today.
How to Rethink Psychology is important reading for upper-level and postgraduate students and researchers in the fields of social psychology, critical psychology, and the philosophy of psychology, and will especially appeal to those studying behavior analysis and radical behaviorism. It has also been written for the general reading public who enjoy exploring new ideas in science and thinking.
Table of Contents
1. Understanding our Own Psychology: Alternative ways to Think 2. The Ubiquitous Social: From Social Constructionism to Social Contextualism 3. Language Use as the Original Virtual Reality 4. Thinking, Self Talk and How to Read Minds 5. The Zen of Running Our Lives: Doing, Thinking and Talking
Bernard Guerin is Professor of Psychology at the University of South Australia.
'Metaphors simplify what is complex: that is why we use them in normal life, and that is why scientists use them. This book makes a powerful case for the ways in which the dominant metaphors in psychology today ensnare us and limit our possibilities. Bernard Guerin successfully shows us how to rethink psychology with a dynamic range of new metaphors.’
– Steven C. Hayes, Department of Psychology, University of Nevada, Reno, USA
'In this indispensable book you will find provocative arguments and metaphors that will shake your beliefs about human action. Rather than providing answers, Bernard Guerin shows what kinds of questions are worth asking in order to advance our understanding of psychology.'
– Julio C. de Rose, Department of Psychology, Federal University of São Carlos, Brazil