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32 of 33 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A broad scope and a straightforward approach
A sleeves-rolled-up, business-like, straightforward survey of the field. Psychoanalysis is given short shrift. Freud gets a brief mention, but Jung, Adler and Reich get none at all. Not surprisingly, parapsychology, hypnotherapy and other fringe theories and therapies are also totally ignored. This is mainstream, orthodox psychology as taught at undergraduate level,...
Published on 26 Jun 2005 by Peter Reeve

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1 of 21 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars More Psycho Babble
Only a day or so ago I got into conversation with a group of eleven women in the pub (who were accompanied by just two males) all of whom it transpired were Doctoral Candidates in Psychology. How education has changed from when - and within living memory - most children left school at fourteen; my own neighbour worked from the age of fourteen until eighty. These women...
Published 17 months ago by opus


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32 of 33 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A broad scope and a straightforward approach, 26 Jun 2005
By 
Peter Reeve (Thousand Oaks, CA USA) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Psychology: A Very Short Introduction (Very Short Introductions) (Paperback)
A sleeves-rolled-up, business-like, straightforward survey of the field. Psychoanalysis is given short shrift. Freud gets a brief mention, but Jung, Adler and Reich get none at all. Not surprisingly, parapsychology, hypnotherapy and other fringe theories and therapies are also totally ignored. This is mainstream, orthodox psychology as taught at undergraduate level, the tradition that began with William James and is current in the profession.
The authors go for breadth rather than depth and manage to cover a surprising array of topics, and do so in a reliable and authoritative manner. They do slip up a couple of times, for example when mentioning linguistic relativity and reiterating the old myth about the plethora of Eskimo words for 'snow'. They wisely stay well away from the philosophical dimensions of the subject, such as the nature of consciousness. They simply use 'consciousness', 'awareness' and 'mindfulness' as if their meanings were transparent, which is fair enough in a book of this nature.
In these Very Short Introductions, space is at a premium and the few illustrations should be carefully chosen. Here we have a picture of a happy couple standing atop a hill, supposedly to illustrate the difficulty of distinguishing drives from goals. Would I be right in assuming it is actually a picture of one of the authors with a friend? A touch of irritating self-indulgence.
So, not the best entry in this series, but if you are looking for a current introduction to mainstream psychology and psychiatry, readable and informative, this is an excellent choice.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A good solid starter, 16 Sep 2009
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BM Gilkes "Beng1" (Leigh-On-Sea) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Psychology: A Very Short Introduction (Very Short Introductions) (Paperback)
This was just the kind of entry into the subject that I was looking for, an intro into the various fields within pyschology (behavioural, developmental etc)which will lead me into further targeted reading. Good stuff.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Good book, 7 Mar 2011
This review is from: Psychology: A Very Short Introduction (Very Short Introductions) (Paperback)
I can only say it's a good book if you don't know much about the subject and need to start somewhere. It gives you an overview and wants you to learn more about it. All in all good.
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11 of 13 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars An ideal introduction for the layman, 25 April 2006
By 
Edward Mclean (Oxford) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Psychology: A Very Short Introduction (Very Short Introductions) (Paperback)
I picked up this book as I have a personal interest in the area and also because it tentatively relates to my line of work (sales).

It does "what it says on the tin"! It is readable, succinct and easily understood, with graphics, tables and photos to illustrate or emphasise key points.

It's an huge challenge to cram a subject like psychology into a tiny book like this, but the authors seem to have done a great job. If you don't require any depth in particular, this is the book for you.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Excellent introduction, 29 Oct 2011
By 
Stephanie Ryland (England) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Psychology: A Very Short Introduction (Very Short Introductions) (Paperback)
This is a very good series: "Very Short Introductions" - this book was tightly written and succinct and told me most of what I needed to know - an overview of the subject. I would definitely recommend this to anyone interested in psychology and wondering if further study is for them.
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1 of 21 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars More Psycho Babble, 3 Nov 2012
This review is from: Psychology: A Very Short Introduction (Very Short Introductions) (Paperback)
Only a day or so ago I got into conversation with a group of eleven women in the pub (who were accompanied by just two males) all of whom it transpired were Doctoral Candidates in Psychology. How education has changed from when - and within living memory - most children left school at fourteen; my own neighbour worked from the age of fourteen until eighty. These women struck me as considerably less worldly-wise than their council-estate contemporaries (who by the age of twenty six - which is what these women will be when they can finally call themselves Doctor) are frequently divorcing their second husband and bringing up young children. These Doctoral Candidates, I thought, are too posh to (re)produce - and probably won't given that there are only so many Bankers to go round and Bankers prefer them young and fit - and without student debt.

Of those who study Psychology at A level (according to The Guardian) 75% thereof are women; that is to say, Psychology is seen as a soft option - a girlie subject. Indeed amongst professional Psychologists one finds that most Psychologists are women, so it is no surprise that in the job-share which is this volume the two shrinks are both women, nor the simply absurd assertion that they make - when discussing prejudice - on page 122, that there is no evidence that women are any less intelligent than men. Only someone prejudiced and blind to life could assert that. The intellectual performance of women is so obviously inferior, that even an equality theorist has to resort to special pleading to suggest otherwise, with the suggestion of unfair play by men - which thus rather thus undermines his (or her) argument.

It is always the little comment or throw-away remark - in this case thinly disguised penis-envy - which reveals so much. Apart from that it is a well written and helpful volume in the series, for a largely pointless occupation - a sort of middle class social-work.
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Psychology: A Very Short Introduction (Very Short Introductions)
Psychology: A Very Short Introduction (Very Short Introductions) by Freda McManus (Paperback - 24 Feb 2000)
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