“This book, which is in its second edition, provides a provocative mirror from which to discern more clearly one's own assumptions about human nature…. I found myself reflecting on the subject matter and its impact on my own life, including relationships, teaching, research, and therapy…. The author has done a superb job of raising our consciousness about human nature in this book, an I strongly recommend it to academic and applied psychologists. If you need an invitation to examine your views about human nature, this book is it.”--C. R. Snyder, University of Kansas, Lawrence In general, are people trustworthy or unreliable, altruistic or selfish? Are they simple and easy to understand or complex and beyond comprehension? Our assumptions about human nature color everything from the way we bargain with a used-car dealer to our expectations about further conflict in the Middle East. Because our assumptions about human nature underlie our reactions to specific events, Wrightsman designed this second edition to enhance our understanding of human nature--the relationship of attitudes to behavior, the unidimensionality of attitudes, and the influence of social movements on beliefs. Psychologists, social workers, researchers, and students will find Assumptions About Human Nature an illuminating exploration into the philosophies of human nature.

Determinants of Philosophies of Human Nature

Determinants of Philosophies of Human Nature

Determinants of philosophies of human nature
Carl E.Young
Lawrence S.Wrightsman

No beliefs will be more important to education than those we hold about the nature of man and the limits of his potentials.

—YEARBOOK COMMITTEE, Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development

Why does one person trust other people while his or her neighbor does not? Antecedent experiences and training, of course, are the general causes, but this chapter presents data on a more specific determinant—“parental training during childhood.” We propose that specific actions of the parents, particularly those of the mother, instill in the young child a positive, negative, or neutral orientation toward people in general. To support this hypothesis we will describe a study that relates maternal behaviors to the degree of trust ...

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