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Sunday, 1 May 2011

50 Great Myths of Popular Psychology - a book review

Psychology, being a soft science, gets a lot rough press. We live in a time where the self-help industry and the modern day followers of Sigmund Freud’s psychoanalysis have brought the study of how we think into disrepute. Thanks to the Oprah Winfrey Show, any quack seems to be able to give us advice on how our mind operates whilst everyone seems to have their own take on psychology, based on what they’ve seen, heard or experienced. However, psychology and its myriad of different disciplines is a science that deserves respect. There is a massive body of evidence taken from robust and decades long studies based on the hard neuroscience available and in accordance with the scientific model. Behavioural science has helped improve the way we teach and understand one another, and improve all sorts of rehabilitation. There is a thick and definite line that separates peer-reviewed and tested academic psychology and psychiatry from psychomythology. This book’s single purpose is to explain this to psychology students and the general public.