The Psychology of Chess: 1st Edition (Paperback) book cover

The Psychology of Chess

1st Edition

By Fernand Gobet


126 pages

Companion Website
Purchasing Options:$ = USD
Paperback: 9781138216655
pub: 2018-10-09
Hardback: 9781138216631
pub: 2018-10-04
eBook (VitalSource) : 9781315441887
pub: 2018-09-14
from $7.98

FREE Standard Shipping!


Do you need to be a genius to be good at chess? What does it take to become a Grandmaster? Can computer programmes beat human intuition in gameplay?

The Psychology of Chess is an insightful overview of the roles of intelligence, expertise, and human intuition in playing this complex and ancient game. The book explores the idea of ‘practice makes perfect’, alongside accounts of why men perform better than women in international rankings, and why chess has become synonymous with extreme intelligence as well as madness.

When artificial intelligence researchers are increasingly studying chess to develop machine learning, The Psychology of Chess shows us how much it has already taught us about the human mind.

Table of Contents



  1. Opening
  2. The eye of the master
  3. Chunks!
  4. The best move
  5. Practice makes (almost) perfect
  6. Men vs. women
  7. Style and intuition
  8. Errare humanum est
  9. Psychological warfare and training techniques
  10. Playing the opponent
  11. Theoretical novelties
  12. Increasing the psychological pressure
  13. Outright cheating
  14. How to progress – From beginner to candidate master
  15. How to progress – From candidate master to grandmaster
  16. Suggested readings
  17. The magic bullet?
  18. Costs of playing chess
  19. Endgame


About the Author

Fernand Gobet is Professor of Psychological Sciences at the University of Liverpool, UK. He is a chess International Master, and played numerous times for the Swiss national team.

About the Series

The Psychology of Everything

People are fascinated by psychology, and what makes humans tick. Why do we think and behave the way we do? We’ve all met armchair psychologists claiming to have the answers, and people that ask if psychologists can tell what they’re thinking. The Psychology of Everything is a series of books which debunk the popular myths and pseudo-science surrounding some of life’s biggest questions.

The series explores the hidden psychological factors that drive us, from our subconscious desires and aversions, to our natural social instincts. Absorbing, informative, and always intriguing, each book is written by an expert in the field, examining how research-based knowledge compares with popular wisdom, and showing how psychology can truly enrich our understanding of modern life.

Applying a psychological lens to an array of topics and contemporary concerns - from sex, to fashion, to conspiracy theories - The Psychology of Everything will make you look at everything in a new way.

Learn more…

Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
BUSINESS & ECONOMICS / Decision-Making & Problem Solving
PSYCHOLOGY / Cognitive Psychology

Press and Publicity