The Psychology of Insecurity : Seeking Certainty Where None Can Be Found book cover
1st Edition

The Psychology of Insecurity
Seeking Certainty Where None Can Be Found

  • Available for pre-order on May 2, 2023. Item will ship after May 23, 2023
ISBN 9781032323954
May 23, 2023 Forthcoming by Routledge
392 Pages 21 B/W Illustrations

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USD $56.95

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Book Description

Insecurity is an inevitable part of being human. Although life is insecure for every organism, humans alone are burdened by knowing that this is so. This ground-breaking volume features contributions by leading international researchers exploring the social psychology of insecurity, and how existential, metaphysical and social uncertainty influence human social behaviour.

Chapters in the book investigate the psychological origins of insecurity, evolutionary theorizing about the functions of insecurity, the motivational strategies people adopt to manage insecurity, self-regulation strategies, the role of insecurity in the formation and maintenance of social relationships, and the influence of insecurity and uncertainty on the organization of larger social systems and public affairs. The chapters also discuss how insecurity influences many areas of contemporary social life, highlighting the applied implications of this line of research. Topics covered include the role of insecurity in social communication, social judgments, decision making, group identification, morality, interpersonal behaviour, relationships, attitudes and many applied aspects of social life and politics where understanding the psychology of insecurity is of critical importance.

This accessible and engaging book will be of interest to students, researchers and practitioners as a textbook or reference book in behavioral and social science fields, as well as to a broad spectrum of intelligent lay audience seeking to understand one of the most intriguing issues that shapes human social life.

Table of Contents

Part 1: The Nature and Sources of Insecurity  1. Understanding the psychology of insecurity: Evolutionary, cognitive, and cultural perspectives  2. The Evolution of Insecurity  3. The Interactive Role of Death, Uncertainty, and the Loss of Shared Reality on Societal and Individual Insecurity  4. The uncertainty challenge: Escape it, embrace it  5. Insecurity can be Beneficial – Reflections on Adaptive Strategies for Diverse Trade-off Settings  Part 2: Managing Individual Insecurity  6. The Arc of Cognitive Dissonance: From Drive to Uncertainty  7. Persuasion as a Sop to Insecurity  8. Self-Handicapping in the Face of Uncertainty: The Paradox That Most Certainly Is  9. Strategy, Trust, and Freedom in an Uncertain World  10. Seeking Moral Meaning in Misfortune – Assigning Blame, Without Regard for Causation  Part 3: The Role of Insecurity in Social Relationships  11. Attachment Security and Coping with Existential Concerns: Studying Security Dynamics in Dyadic, Group, Sociopolitical, and Spiritual/Religious Relationships  12. Beyond Dyadic Interdependence: Romantic Relationships in an Uncertain Social World  13. Adult Attachment Insecurity During the COVID pandemic: Heightened Insecurity and its Undoing  14. Social Identity Dynamics in the Face of Overwhelming Uncertainty  15. From Individual Insecurity to Collective Security: The Group Survival Motivation  Part 4: The Role of Insecurity and Uncertainty in Politics and Public Life  16. Trust in Social Institutions: The Role of Informational and Personal Uncertainty  17. The Politics of Insecurity: How Uncertainty Promotes Populism and Tribalism  18. Uncertainty, Academic Radicalization, and the Erosion of Social Science Credibility  19. Escape from uncertainty: To conspiracy theories and pseudoscience  20.  Feelings of Insecurity as Drivers of Anti-establishment Sentiments

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Joseph P. Forgas is Scientia Professor at the University of New South Wales. His research focuses on affective influences on social cognition and behavior. For his work, he received the Order of Australia and the Distinguished Scientific Contribution Award, and he has been elected Fellow of the Australian and Hungarian Academies of Science.

William D. Crano is Oskamp professor of Psychology at Claremont Graduate University. He was Liaison Scientist for the US Office of Naval Research, NATO Senior Scientist, and Fulbright Senior Scholar. His research focuses on attitude development and attitude change and their applications.

Klaus Fiedler is Professor of Psychology at the University of Heidelberg and Fellow of the German Academies of Science, the Association for Psychological Sciences, and Society for Personality and Social Psychology. His research focuses on social cognition, language, judgments, and decision making. He received several awards, including the Leibniz Award, and he is on the editorial boards of leading journals.