The Courage to Be Disliked

Tags:  psychology
The Courage to Be Disliked is an introduction to Adlerian psychology in the form of a Socratic dialog. A young man who feels stuck and is unhappy with himself seeks the counsel of an older philosopher. He wants to know how he can find happiness and meaning in world where he never seems to measure up to the expectations of himself or others, a world in which the paths forward seem to both limited and uninviting and may lead to a life he ultimately doesn’t even want.

Martian Time-Slip

Tags:  sci-fi psychology
Martian Time-Slip, published in 1964, takes place on Mars in the late 1990s. The United Nations has begun colonizing the red planet, “reclaiming” desert to serve as farmland and establishing settlements along the great canals. Water is scarce, as are fine foods and luxury goods. Most people subsist on water rations and whatever meager crops they can raise. Jack Bohlen is a repairman flying from job to job in his Yee Company helicopter.

People of the Lie

Tags:  non-fiction religion psychology
Scott Peck’s People of the Lie proposes that psychology should begin a formal scientific study of evil, and that evil should be added as a diagnosis in American psychiatry’s Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM). Peck mentions along the way that when he made this suggestion to an audience of psychologists and theologians, both sides disagreed with him. Though this book is full of interesting ideas and valuable observations, I agree with Peck’s audience.

The Choice by Edith Eger

Tags:  non-fiction psychology
Dr. Eger gives a powerful and harrowing account of her youth, of being taken from her home in Hungary, herded into the cattle cars, separated from her parents at Auschwitz. She and her sister survived more than a year in the death camp, and for months more on the death marches that followed before an American GI lifted her from a pile of corpses. Hope and remembrance of the good in life sustained her through unspeakable horrors.

The Body Keeps the Score

Tags:  non-fiction psychology
The Body Keeps the Score describes what Dr. Bessel Van Der Kolk has seen and learned in his thirty-plus years of treating trauma survivors. The author describes the causes and manifestations of trauma in a number of patients from his clinical practice: abused children, combat veterans, victims of accidents, rape, and assault. He describes how the intense emotional impact of trauma can linger for years when the mind is unable to assimilate the unbearable terror of events.
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