What's So Wrong with Being Absolutely Right?: The Dangerous Nature of Dogmatic Belief
"Like pesky wasps buzzing circles around us, people who act as if they were the sole expert on a subject put us on edge. In halls of learning where we least expect to find it, in governments, in religious temples, in businesses, in marriages and families, dogmatism is the arrogant voice of certainty that closes the mind, damages relationships, and threatens peaceful coexistence on this planet." —From chapter 1
In this incisive analysis of an increasingly pervasive problem, clinical psychologist Dr. Judy J. Johnson presents a landmark theory that probes the psychological channels of dogmatism. While other books describe the effects of specific types of ideological extremism, a wide-angle theory of dogmatism—in all its manifestations—has been lacking until now.
Drawing from traditional and contemporary personality theories, biopsychology, social learning theory, Buddhism, and evolutionary psychology, Johnson explores major influences that shape the personality trait of dogmatism. She uses lively case studies to illustrate twelve characteristics of dogmatism, and suggests strategies for minimizing its harmful effects in our personal lives as well as our educational, political, and other social institutions.
Written in a clear, engaging style that is professional in tone yet accessible to a wide audience, Johnson’s insightful work will enlighten readers on one of the most important issues of our time.
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The Personality Puzzle
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ability adaptive adolescence adults Altemeyer American Psychiatric Association amygdala anxiety authority figures become behavioral characteristics belief systems Big Five biological brain Buddhism chapter characteristics of dogmatism chological Christiane Amanpour closed closed-minded cognitive cognitive closure cognitive frame complex cultural defensive despair dignity dogmatic authoritarian aggression dogmatic belief dogmatists dominance E. O. Wilson emotional environment evolutionary Evolutionary Psychology existential existential despair Existential Psychotherapy experiences fear feelings genes genetic goals human Ibid ical ideas identity ideological in-group individuals infants insecure interact Jonah lack leaders Linda McQuaig matism McCrae minds motives nature neurons one's open-minded out-group parents personality development personality traits perspective political power and status predisposition preoccupation with power psychological rational reason relationships religious response reward rigid Rokeach role Scale secure attachment sense social connection social learning Social learning theory thinking thoughts tion tism tive trait theory truth understand values views vulnerable York