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Psychology books


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Note that the star ratings here are much stricter than Amazon's

Star ratings

 Brilliant--Best in class
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 Ok--some bits useful 
 Yuk--one bit useful

Social psychology

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Elliot Aronson, Timothy D. Wilson and Robin M. Akert, Social Psychology, Longman, NY, 1999 

Social psychology is stuffed full of serious research that is really useful in persuasion. There are loads of books called 'Social Psychology', (most of which are undergraduate texts). This is one of the better ones. Aronson, who studied under Festinger, is a big name in the field. 



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Roderick M. Kramer and Tom R. Tyler, Trust in Organizations: Frontiers of Theory and Research, Sage: Thousand Oaks, CA, 1996

An academic book reviewing the latest research in trust (up to the publication date, of course). Good for deep research, but not a light read. Includes detail of 'Swift trust'.


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Christel Lane and Reinhard Bachmann, Trust Within and Between Organizations, Oxford University Press, NY, 1998

Another solid academic book containing collected papers on the subject of trust.



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Annette Simmons, Territorial Games, NY: Amacom, 1998

A useful book on games of power and politics within organizations, describing in detail ten common games and ways to manage them.

See also the review of this book.


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Eileen McCann and Douglas Shannon (1985). The Two Step, New York: Grove Weidenfeld

A wonderful illustrated book on the courtship dance that we play with one another. Fun and educative.


Developmental psychology

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Gene Cohen, The Mature Mind, Basic Books, 2005 

  A most excellent book from a world authority on mental aging. Cohen gives hope as he shows how the older mind has many benefits and that decay only happens through disease. Solid and readable bridging from academic base to practical value.  


Political psychology

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John T. Jost and Jim Sidanius (Eds), Political Psychology: Key Readings, Psychology Press, 2003 

  Solid academic writings in the relatively specialized area of political psychology. Includes key papers from the past plus updates to give an excellent overview of this important area.


Other psychology

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Henry Brown, Neil Dawson and Brenda McHugh (2018). Psychology, Emotion and Intuition in Work Relationships (The Head, Heart and Gut Professional), Routledge, London 

  A solid book on the basics of psychology at work for managers and other professionals. Yes, all managers (and anyone who works with other people) need a grounding in this important subject. This is a straightforward book that gives an easy and informative introduction to the subject.


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Mark Devon, The Origin of Emotions, 2006

  A fascinating exploration of emotions, full of original insights and assertions. no academic reference or evidence, yet a splendid source of thought to challenge your understanding of this subject.


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Sarah Tomley, What Would Freud Do?, London, Cassell, 2017 

Freud is a notoriously difficult read. He is also notorious, though often through second (or tenth) hand opinions. This is a very readable book about Freud and his writings, wrapped up in an easy question-and-answer style, with one short chapter for each question (and associated Freudian concept). If you've not read Freud before, this is a great way to set the record straight and learn some very useful ideas. 


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Marcus Weeks, What Would Nietzsche Do?, London, Cassell, 2017 

Friedrich Nietzsche is one of those deep European philosophers who can cook your brain for breakfast. This books offers a way to learn about his ideas in safety as, like it's sibling 'What Would Freud Do?', it uses everyday questions about life to offer a smart Nietzschean perspective on how to live more successfully. 


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