Teenage cliques, jihadist cells, army units, polar expeditions, and football hooligans – on the face of it, each of these groups might seem exceptional, but the forces that bind and drive them can affect us all. In recent decades, psychologists have uncovered how and why our innate socialness holds huge sway over how we think and act, propelling us to both high achievement and unthinking cruelty. We are beholden to our peers, even when we think we’re calling the shots. This is the power of others.
In this captivating work, science writer Michael Bond investigates the latest breakthroughs in social psychology to reveal how to guard against groupthink, build better teamwork, identify shared objectives, become more ethical, and survive moments of isolation. A fascinating blend of evolutionary theory, behavourial science, and remarkable case studies, The Power of Others will teach you to truly harness your collective self.
Michael Bond has been writing on psychology and human behaviour for more than fifteen years as a regular contributor to New Scientist, Nature, Prospect, the Observer, the Daily Telegraph, the Financial Times, and others. During the Arab Spring, he also served as lead researcher for the Royal Society report on science in Egypt. He lives in London.
Publisher: Oneworld Publications (May 1, 2014)
Length: 320 pages
'Important and compelling. Bond drives home a fact that we all must accept – we are never alone. The people in our lives affect every aspect of our behaviour in ways that we are often not consciously aware of.'
– David McRaney, bestselling author of You Are Not So Smart
'Accessible, captivating, and fun. Though we think of ourselves as free individuals, our choices are influenced by others – and the scary thing is that we don’t realise it.'
– William Poundstone, author of Are You Smart Enough to Work at Google?
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