On Multiple Selves refutes the idea that a human being has a single unified self. Instead, David Lester argues, the mind is made up of multiple selves, and this is a normal psychological phenomenon. Lester expands on his earlier work on the phenomenon, illuminating how a "multiple-self theory of the mind" is critically necessary to understanding human behavior.
Most of us are aware that we have multiple selves. We adopt different "facade selves" depending on whom we are with. Lester argues that contrary to the popular psychological term, "false self," these presentations of self are all part of us, not false; they simply cover layers of identity. He asserts that at any given moment in time, one or another of our subselves is in control and determines how we think and act. Lester covers situations that may encourage the development of multiple selves, ranging from post-traumatic stress resulting from combat to bilinguals who speak two (or more) languages fluently.
Lester's views of multiple selves will resonate with readers' individual subjective experience. On Multiple Selves is an essential read for psychologists, philosophers, and social scientists and will fascinate general readers as well.
Prologue: What Is the Self?
1 A Multiple Self Theory of the Mind
2 Robert Lifton's Concept of the Protean Self
3 The Metaphor of the Greek Gods
4 Multiple Selves versus Meta-Preferences
5 Mendlovic's Psychoanalytic Approach to the Multiple Self
6 Rita Carter and Multiplicity
7 Gestalt Therapy and the Multiple Self
8 A Plethora of Similar Ideas
9 Bilinguals and the Multiple Self
11 Psychotherapists and the Multiple Self
12 The Multiple Self in Fairy Tales
13 Economists' Views of the Multiple Self
14 What is Not a Multiple Self
15 Empirical Studies of the Multiple Self
16 Conclusions and Final Thoughts
Senior Author Index