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Making Sense of People: Decoding the Mysteries of Personality, CourseSmart eTextbook

By Samuel Barondes

Published by FT Press

Published Date: Jun 22, 2011

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Every day, we all size up each other: It's one of the most important things we ever do. Making Sense of People provides the scientific frameworks and tools we need to improve our intuition, and assess people more consciously, systematically, and effectively.


Leading neuroscientist Samuel H. Barondes explains the research behind each standard personality category: extraversion, agreeableness, conscientiousness, neuroticism, and openness. He shows readers how to use these traits and assessments to do a better job of deciding who they'll enjoy spending time with, whom to trust, and whom to keep at a distance. Barondes explains:

  • What neuroscience and psychological research can tell us about how personality types develop and cohere.
  • The intertwined roles of genes, nurture, and education in personality development.
  • How to recognize troublesome personality patterns such as narcissism, sociopathy, and paranoia.
  • How much a child's behavior predicts their adult personality, and how personality stabilizes in young adulthood.
  • How to assess integrity, fairness, wisdom, and other traits related to morality.
  • What genetic testing may (or may not) teach us about personality in the future.
  • General strategies for getting along with people, with specific tactics for special circumstances.

Table of Contents

Introduction     1


Part I: Describing Personality Differences

1          Personality Traits     7

2          Troublesome Patterns     29


Part II: Explaining Personality Differences

3          How Genes Make Us Different     57

4          Building a Personal Brain     77


Part III: Whole Persons, Whole Lives

5          What’s a Good Character?     99

6          Identity: Creating a Personal Story     123

7          Putting It All Together     139


Endnotes     151

References     177

About the Author     217

Index     219


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Making Sense of People: Decoding the Mysteries of Personality, CourseSmart eTextbook
Format: Safari Book

$17.49 | ISBN-13: 978-0-13-277644-8