Presented in cooperation with www.NewConversations.net


Take the next step in your life with inspiring books about
interpersonal communication and human development

We invite you to explore…

Listening as a transformative processForgiveness: From personal healing to political transformation

Asking questions more creatively, engagingly  and productively

Communicating and negotiating at work

Parenting: Communication and relationship advice for parents

Partnering: Communication and relationship advice for couples

Violence: The problem and visions of possible solutions

Integrative visions of communication and development

Psychotherapy: the healing dialogue

Free  Books Online from the National Academies Press

 

Listening
as a transformative process

 

FREE PDF E-BOOK>>  Compassionate Listening: An Exploratory Sourcebook About Conflict Transformation (33 pages),
by Gene Knudsen Hoffman, Leah Green and Cynthia Monroe.
Edited and with an introduction by Dennis Rivers.

From the Introduction:  The
later Gene Knudsen Hoffman was a remarkable woman, and this book is a report from the growing edge of a movement she pioneered, nurtured and mentored.  Forms of compassionate listening have been practiced among Quakers and Buddhists for centuries, and among psychotherapists for decades. Gene was both a Quaker peace activist and a pastoral counselor, and she achieved two great things over the past thirty years.  First, she took the practice of compassionate listening out of the quiet environs of the Quaker meeting house, out from behind the closed doors of the therapy session, and on to the stage of the world’s greatest conflicts.  Her many trips to Russia and the Middle East have made her a legend in the peacemaking community.  Second, she popularized compassionate listening in a generous way that invites and encourages other people to take up this practice, develop it and apply it in new areas.  This book is an expression of that generosity.  Available free of charge around the world as an e-book, it includes several of her essays, her lesson plans for Compassionate Listening Workshops, and reports from Leah Green and Cynthia Monroe, two of her co-pioneers and creative colleagues.  


Are You Really Listening?: Keys to Successful Communication By Paul J. Donoghue, PhD, and Mary E. Siegel, PhD.

Listening is an essential skill worth every effort to learn and to master. Listening takes us out of our tendency toward self-absorption and self-protection. It opens us to the world around us and to the persons who matter most to us. When we listen, we learn, we grow, and we are nourished.

Why do we often feel cut off when speaking to the people closest to us? What is it that keeps so many of us from really listening? Practicing psychotherapists, Donoghue and Siegel answer these questions and more in this thoughtful, witty, and helpful look at the reasons why people don’t listen. Filled with vivid examples that clearly demonstrate easy-to-learn listening techniques, Are You Really Listening? is a guide to the secrets and joys of listening and being listened to. [From the publisher, Quest Books] List price new, appx. $16.  ISBN: 0835608263.    


The Zen of Listening: Mindful Communication in the Age of Distraction By Rebecca Z. Shafir.

What do family members, coworkers, and friends want most but seldom get? Your undivided attention. Poor listening can be a cause of divorce, depression, customer dissatisfaction, low grades, and other ills. This Zen-based, practical guide will help you build relationships, sharpen concentration, create loyal clients, strengthen negotiating skills, hear what others miss, and get them to hear. [From the publisher, Quest Books] List price new, appx. $16.  ISBN: 0835608263.
   


The Wisdom of Listening  Edited by Mark Brady.  In this thoughtful anthology, eighteen contemporary spiritual teachers explore the transformative effects, and the difficulties, of skillful listening and suggest ways in which becoming a ‘listening warrior’ — someone who listens mindfully wiith focused attention — can improve relationships.  Free of religious dogma and elf help clichés, the essays are inspiring, intelligent and accessible. [from the back cover]  (List price new, appx $17. ISBN: 0861713559)

 

  


The Sacred Art of Listening: Forty Reflections for Cultivating a Spiritual Practice.  By Kay Lindahl, teacher and writer. A series of personal meditations on what it means to listen with an open heart.  Designed to illumine your spiritual journey, this book provides access to a new way of listening — to Source, to self and to others.    

“Learning how to listen to and speak
with
each other are essential skills for creating
relationships
that lead to mutual respect,
dialogue, understanding, and
peace. As I
explore a spiritual approach to listening,
my
understanding of what it actually means
to listen continues to
expand. Listening
encompasses much more than words.
Listening
is a way of being in the world.
These reflections speak from
that voice.”
—from part 1

Also, see Kay Lindahl’s beautiful web site with a visual meditation on listening in the form of an animated slide show.     

 

 

Forgiveness  —  from personal healing to political transformation

 

Forgiveness: Breaking the Chain of Hate , by Michael Henderson. These heart-moving stories from around the world will permanently expand your sense of what is possible between people.  

Excerpt from Gene Knudsen Hoffman’s review:

“There is a way the world can change from war to peace, from hatred to love. It requires a lot of effort, a lot of understanding, and it begins at home.  For centuries we’ve been told to practice it, that it’s healing for ourselves and the other, that it’s a way to manifest love and courage. It brings peace to the participants. It is a brave and noble thing to do, and — it can be very costly, costly to pride, to arrogance, to fear, to hate.  Michael Henderson has written the definitive book on it and it’s called: Forgiveness. Of it Desmond Tutu wrote, `A deeply moving and eloquent testimony to the power of forgiveness in the life of individuals, of communities, and between and within nations. It effects change — a powerful book.` ”  [ read
full review
]

Get
m ore info about this book plus purchase links
to many countries at
Global-Find-A-Book .


Forgive for Good , by Fred Luskin, PhD.  With clear and gentle steps, Dr. Luskin with guide you to “take your hurt less personally, take responsibility for how you feel, and become a hero instead of a victim in the story you tell.” Here is a brief review comment by Jan Sollish posted on Amazon:  ” Forgive for Good is an invaluable tool for just about everyone. The methods Dr. Luskin teaches through his book are clear, easy to understand and implement, and incredibly powerful. The chapter in which he describes his work with the women from Northern Ireland who had lost loved ones in the fighting is so moving as to be life altering. The pain of these women, the horror of their experience, and finally their subsequent relief from some of the emotional pain they have carried for years is simply amazing. For me, this book combined a practicality of everyday life with a gentle spirituality. I have already bought it for several friends and plan to use it as a tool in my life as well.” (Price: appx. $12/new, $7/used.  ISBN: 006251721X. Look for this book at your local library, or
g
et
m
ore info about this book plus purchase links
to many countries at Global-Find-A-Book.

Asking questions more creatively, engagingly  and productively

 

Free
document about questions:
 
Sam Keen’s wonderful article on the great questions of life.  Two pages that can change your life.  As Keen says, “Your question is the quest you’re on.”


Free document:  Chapter Five of The Seven Challenges Workbook , on creative questioning, includes the Keen article above, and references to creative questioning in many areas of dialogue and endeavor. (10 pages)


They’re an essential tool of the seeker and the problem- solver, and in our personal and professional lives, they can make the difference between getting what we want and going without. Questions have power-and by harnessing that power, we can change our world. This unique book reveals the seven powers of questions-and shows how to use them most effectively. Learn how questions can improve relationships, help determine what people really want, uncover opportunities, persuade others, and get more out of every business or personal encounter.

order
book online


by Andrew Finlayson

Written by a seasoned business reporter and TV news manager, this provocative “questioning manifesto” and practical “how-to” book gives people the insights and tools to ask effective questions that get results in every realm of their professional lives. It is also a powerful tool that will help business leaders create a progressive environment where questions flow freely and creatively-boosting knowledge and performance increase at all levels of the organization.

order
book online

 

Written as an engaging fable, Change Your Questions inspires readers to take charge of their thinking in order to accomplish goals, improve relationships, advance careers, investigate new territories, and in general gain greater life satisfaction. This book explains how to “be your own coach,” outlines the author’s Question Thinking Model, and lists the top 12 questions for change.

order
book online

 

Communicating and negotiating at work


Getting to Yes:
Negotiating Agreement Without Giving In
(2nd ed.)
by Roger Fisher, William Ury and Bruce Patton.
New York: Penguin Books.  1991.

The authors, members of the Harvard Negotiation Project,
have popularized the idea of “win-win” solutions to
audiences around
the world. They propose that by understanding your own long-term interests better and by understanding your bargaining opponent’s long-term interests, you can work toward agreements in which everyone gets more of what they want and need.  These kinds of agreements take more work to create but they are more likely to last than simple “split the difference” compromises.  A great introduction to negotiation with examples from business and politics.  According to John Kenneth Galbraith, “This is by far the best thing I’ve ever read about negotiation. It is equally relevant for the individual who would like to keep his friends, property, and income and the statesman who would like to keep the peace.”

(Price: appx. $13.00.  ISBN: 0140157352. Look for this book at your local library, order from your favorite local bookstore,
or click here
to find this book in bookstores around the world.)


Getting Past No : Negotiating in
Difficult Situations

by William Ury.

Excerpt from Amazon.com review: This a must read for anyone that interacts with people. William Ury has written a very practical, easily read, guide and process that anyone can use right from the start. Not just a ‘business guide’, his five step process is easily applied to everyday situations and with practice is a foundation for much larger negotiations. The principles are well defined via a five step process that is demonstrated through examples that are fresh, relevant, understood by common association. Much effort has been made to make this text even more memorable than ‘Getting to Yes.’ Gearing concepts through example gives the reader a sense of self mastery without having to memorize lists. The framework builds upon itself with frequent review of previously introduced terms. From business to interpersonal communication, this book has something for everyone. (Price: appx. $15.00.  ISBN: 0553371312. Look for this book at your local library, order from your favorite local bookstore,
or
click here
to find this book in bookstores around the world.)  


Difficult Conversations:
How to Discuss what Matters Most

by Douglas Stone, Bruce Patton, Sheila Heen & Roger Fisher.

Excerpt from Amazon.com review: We’ve all been there: We know we must confront a coworker, store clerk, or friend about some especially sticky situation–and we know the encounter will be uncomfortable. So we repeatedly mull it over until we can no longer put it off, and then finally stumble through the confrontation. Difficult Conversations offers advice for handling these unpleasant exchanges in a manner that accomplishes their objective and diminishes the possibility that anyone will be needlessly hurt. The authors, associated with Harvard Law School and the Harvard Project on Negotiation, show how such dialogues actually comprise three separate components: the “what happened” conversation (verbalizing what we believe really was said and done), the “feelings” conversation (communicating and acknowledging each party’s emotional impact), and the “identity” conversation (expressing the situation’s underlying personal meaning).

(Price: appx. $16/new, $8/used.  ISBN: 014028852X. Look for this book at your local library, order from your favorite local bookstore or click here
to find this book in bookstores around the world.)


Bringing Out the Best in People:
How to Apply the Astonishing Power
of Positive Reinforcement

by Aubrey C. Daniels.

Expressing more appreciation is one of the Seven Challenges emphasized on this web site.  Daniels’ book is controversial because he discusses motivating people with rewards, recognition and organizational programs that try to express systematic appreciation for jobs well done.  Some people have objected that this is treating employees like trainable animals:  throwing a fish to the performing dolphin.  The problem is that organizations are always conditioning their employees in one way or another; any structured environment does that. So this book recommends that companies take responsibility for steering the conditioning processes that are at work every day.  The most important issue here is that people who cause problems often get most of the attention in organizations, and people who try hard and perform well often get ignored and taken for granted.  The high performing folks then get frustrated and leave, because their basic need for recognition is not being met.  And when they do leave, the organization suffers.  The idea of managing by correcting mistakes and “keeping people in line” has such a strong grip on so many managers that it will probably take radical programs like Daniels’ to get people on the road toward managing by rewarding excellence.   Review by Dennis Rivers. (Price: appx. $22/new.  ISBN: 0071351450. Look for this book at your local library, order from your favorite local bookstore or click here
to find this book in bookstores around the world.

 

 

Integrative — home + work + relationships + personal growth

MESSAGES: The Communication Skills Book ,
by Matthew McKay, Martha Davis and Patrick Fanning.
Oakland: New Harbinger.  3rd
Edition. 2009. 

Many people assume that good communicators possess an intrinsic
talent for speaking and listening to others, a gift that can’t be
learned or improved. The reality is that communication skills are
developed with deliberate effort and practice, and learning to
understand others and communicate your ideas more clearly will improve
every facet of your life.

Now in its third edition, Messages
has helped thousands of readers cultivate better relationships with
friends, family members, coworkers, and partners. You’ll discover new
skills to help you communicate your ideas more effectively and become a
better listener. Learn how to:

    • Read body language
    • Develop
      skills for couples communication
    • Negotiate and resolve
      conflicts
    • Communicate with family members
    • Handle group
      interactions
    • Talk to children
    • Master public speaking
    • Prepare
      for job interviews

Messages is a comprehensive
handbook in a most important human skill-personal communication. Reading
it made me feel like an enthusiastic partner in an achievable learning
endeavor.

-Virginia Satir, author of
Peoplemaking and The
New Peoplemaking

Look for this book at your local library, or
get
more info about this book plus purchase links
to many countries at
Global-Find-A-Book .


Nonviolent Communication: A Language of Compassion
by  Marshall B. Rosenberg. (Del Mar, CA: PuddleDancer Press. 1999.)

This book presents Rosenberg’s vision of empathic communication and the four essential messages that we need to express so that other people can understand what we are experiencing.  These same four elements are what we need to listen for in order to understand other people (and ourselves) better.  One reader wrote: “A clinical psychologist who studied with Carl Rogers, Dr. Rosenberg pulls together in lucid, flowing prose, information from many respected sources on the art and science of the practical use of language in creating empathy and human connection. Beautifully written in language that demonstrates his compassion.”  (Price: appx. $17.95.  ISBN: 1892005026. Look for this book at your local library, or
g
et
m
ore info about this book plus purchase links
to many countries at Global-Find-A-Book.


The Talk Book: with
six prize-winning talk tools that strengthen relationships and
repair communcation breakdowns
by Gerald Goodman.  Book
Surge. 2009.

This book presents Goodman’s vision of the six most important “Talk Tools.”  His chapters include lively transcripts of phone conversations showing exactly how the “Talk Tools” can help.  The principles discussed are applied in both work and family contexts.  Includes a great reference section that will introduce you to the most interesting and promising work in the area of interpersonal communication studies.  Look for this book at your local library, or
g
et
m ore info about this book plus purchase links
to many countries at
Global-Find-A-Book .

 

Parenting  —  communication and relationship advice for parents

Becoming
A Kind Father: A Son’s Journey

By Calvin Sandborn

The macho society that held John Wayne as a role model
has created an emotional wasteland where 80 percent of men are
unable to accurately express their feelings, and that same percentage
feel estranged from their fathers. The stifled male, disconnected
and out of touch, fills the void with apathy or anger, and the
toll is staggering: short, unhealthy lives, ruined relationships,
and damaged children. This destructive behavior repeats itself
in the next generation as the sins of the father continue the
cycle.

In Becoming the
Kind Father, Calvin Sandborn aims to break that cycle. His intensely
personal story is heart-searing and inspirational. Brought up
to fear his father’s alcohol-fueled fury and hateful put-downs,
the author buried his feelings and fine-tuned his own rage.
His father’s early death and the collapse of the author’s marriage
provided catalysts for change.

Interspersing clever
literary references with painful childhood memories, intense
self-examination, and astute observations, Sandborn provides
well-researched psychological findings and self-help tips, including
how to:
 Identify and share feelings — Treat yourself
as a kind father would — Form trusting male friendships –Break
the anger habit — Forgive the world and yourself.
This
guide offers helpful insight for the millions of men who want
to become kinder human beings. A must-read for every woman who
loves an angry or emotionally distant man.

Read:   Excerpt
Listen:  
Audio
Podcast Part 1
  Audio
Podcast Part 2

Calvin Sandborn
is a journalist, author, and environmental lawyer who currently
supervises the University of Victoria Environmental Law Clinic.
He is also a kind father and grandfather. (Price
of book: appx. $16, new. 
ISBN-13: 978-0865715820. Look for this book at your local library, order from your favorite local bookstore or click here
to order a new or used copy from the NewConversations+Amazon Books Link.)


How to Talk So Kids Will Listen & Listen So Kids Will Talk , by Adele Faber and Elaine Mazlish.  New York: Avon Books.  1980.  A book for parents and everyone who wants to improve their communication with kids.  Full of wonderfully informative cartoon sequences illustrating the major points. (Price: appx. $12.50.  ISBN: 0380570009. Look for this book at your local library, order from your favorite local bookstore or click on title to order from Amazon.)





 


Raising Your Spirited Child : A Guide for Parents Whose Child Is More Intense, Sensitive, Perceptive, Persistent, and Energetic.
By Mary Sheedy Kurcinka

Review from Amazon.com:   Recently, temperament traits have come to the forefront of child development theory. In Raising Your Spirited Child, Mary Sheedy Kurcinka’s first contribution is to redefine the “difficult child” as the “spirited” child, a child that is, as she says, MORE. Many people are leery about books that are too quick to “type” kids, but Kurcinka, a parent of a spirited child herself and a parent educator for 20 years, doesn’t fall into that trap. Instead, she provides tools to understanding your own temperament as well as your child’s. When you understand your temperamental matches–and your mismatches–you can better understand, work, live, socialize, and enjoy spirit in your child. By reframing challenging temperamental qualities in a positive way, and by giving readers specific tools to work with these qualities, Kurcinka has provided a book that will help all parents, especially the parents of spirited children, understand and better parent their children. (Price: appx. $13/new, $6/used.  ISBN: 0060923288. Look for this book at your local library, or
get
more info about this book plus purchase links
to many countries at
Global-Find-A-Book .


Raising an Emotionally Intelligent Child

By John
M. Gottman, Joan
Declaire, Daniel
P. Goleman


Every parent knows the importance of equipping children with the intellectual
skills they need to succeed in school and life. But children also need to master
their emotions. Raising an Emotionally Intelligent Child is a guide to
teaching children to understand and regulate their emotional world. And as
acclaimed psychologist and researcher John Gottman shows, once they master this
important life skill, emotionally intelligent children will enjoy increased
self-confidence, greater physical health, better performance in school, and
healthier social relationships. Raising an Emotionally Intelligent Child
will equip parents with a five-step “emotion coaching” process that teaches how
to:

* Be aware of a child’s emotions
* Recognize emotional expression as an
opportunity for intimacy and teaching
* Listen empathetically and validate a
child’s feelings
* Label emotions in words a child can understand
* Help a
child come up with an appropriate way to solve a problem or deal with an
upsetting issue or situation

Written for parents of children of all ages, Raising an Emotionally
Intelligent Child
will enrich the bonds between parent and child and
contribute immeasurably to the development of a generation of emotionally
healthy adults. Look for this book at your local library, or
get
more info about this book plus purchase links
to many countries at
Global-Find-A-Book .

 

Partnering  —  communication and relationship advice for couples

 

Do I Have To Give Up Me To Be Loved By You?
by Jordan Paul,
PhD, & Margaret Paul, PhD (Hazelden, 2002)

“This book is built around the concept of courageous honesty and the psychological insight that, in order to feel close, partners need to tell one another the truth about what they are thinking and feeling.  The peace that a couple buys by avoiding difficult issues can eventually destroy the relationship they hope to protect. This
book maps a path toward respectful honesty.”
–Dennis
Rivers, MA, author of “The Seven Challenges Workbook”

“The most important, useful and powerful book I have read on couple therapy since Virginia Satirs Conjoint Family Therapy. One of the rare books that is both useful to the lay audience and indispensable for the clinician.”
–DENNIS JAFFE, PH.D., author of “Healing From Within”

Publisher’s Description: Arguing
with your spouse about the checkbook? The in-laws? Kids’ schedules?
Couples think they fight about money, family issues, and time. But what
are these conflicts really about? Family therapists Jordan Paul and
Margaret Paul reveal how couple discord is often rooted in
self-protection. Here, in their best-selling book, they help couples
work through fears and false beliefs that block expression of loving
feelings. The result? A freer, more joyful, and profoundly intimate
relationship.  

Amazon review by Jeremy J. Shapiro: 
For me this book is one of the most profound and important books I have
ever read about relationships and communication. Although it is written
as a book about marital relationships, it has implications for every
kind of relationship, and not only intimate or dyadic ones. And,
although it is written as a pop psychology book, I think it makes a real
contribution to the social-scientific understanding of relationships
and communication — that is, it stands up well as a general model of
communication and relationship. I think it is a great book and would be
of great value not only to those trying to solve relationship problems
but to those wanting to understand the ways in which self and
relationship are intertwined in general. It illuminates all of the areas
of one’s life in which one communicates with others and, as another
reader said, can be as valuable for understanding past relationships as
for dealing with present ones.

Look for this book at your local library, or
get
more info about this book plus purchase links
to many countries at
Global-Find-A-Book .
Because this book has sold more than a million copies, there
are many inexpensive used copies available on
AmazonUSA.


light-in-mirrorLight in the Mirror (Ramira Publishing, Aptos, CA. 1995.), by Joyce and Barry Vissell, is subtitled “A New Way to Understand Relationships.” Books of this nature are myriad. What distinguishes the Vissell’s book from others is that it is grounded in the one place that truly creates understanding and thus cooperative communication – the place of vulnerability. Much of the advice and guidance in self-help and mainstream psychology is predicated on communicational technique but technique, absent a true commitment to honesty and self-disclosure about feelings, cannot be effective. For any technique to work, there must be an underlying openness to change which can only happen when two people are willing to share with each other their fears, doubts, uncertainties, shames and guilts – in short – their vulnerability. And this kind of sharing often doesn’t happen because one or both people are afraid the other will use their vulnerability as ammunition during times of disagreement.

While perhaps not explicitly stated, there is a deep implicit spirituality underlying the Vissell’s book which seems to clearly provides the foundation for the faith and trust that must exist in order to be vulnerable with a loved one. Then the chicken and the egg question arises: which has to come first – vulnerability in order to have faith and trust in a partner, or faith and trust in order to be able to be vulnerable?

I invite interested readers to find the answer to this question by reading the Vissell’s book.   Review by Bob Freeman

(Price: appx. $16/new, $6/used.  ISBN: 0961272058. Look for this book at your local library, order from your favorite local bookstore.


  

Psychotherapy
Since there are many good books on psychotherapy, I have selected
three that I consider revolutionary  —  books that truly open
new doors of thought and feeling.

On Becoming a Person: A Therapist’s View of Psychotherapy
by Carl R. Rogers. (Boston: Houghton Mifflin.  1995.)

  A classic (first published in 1961
and still in print), scholarly but very readable book on the challenges of becoming a more authentic person who is open to new experience.  Rogers was a pioneer advocate of the healing power of supportive listening in both psychotherapy and everyday life. His most revolutionary idea was that the
therapist did not have to ‘fix’ the client; if the therapist simply provided a deeply accepting environment and LISTENED
responsively, the client’s own sense of inner rightness would come into play and guide the client to find a solution that was right for him/her.  (Price: appx. $15.00.  ISBN: 039575531X.)

Look for this book at your local library, or
g et
m
ore info about this book plus purchase links
to many countries at Global-Find-A-Book.


Narrative Therapy: The Social Construction of Preferred Realities
by Jill Freedman
and Gene Combs


This book is expensive and demanding, but it opens new worlds of possibilities for anyone willing to work through it.  The authors give a detailed description or how people use story lines to bring order into their life experience.  But these story lines, the plots of our lives, can become so focused on our problems and struggles that our strengths and successes disappear completely from consciousness, fall into a kind of limbo of unknowing.  Narrative therapy patiently re-gathers these lost facets of a persons life, the sparkling moments, and helps therapy clients use these moments as a kind of compass with which to steer their attention and creative effort toward competence and fulfillment.  Once you have read the transcripts, you will start having different conversations with yourself about your life!  
Review by Dennis Rivers (Price: appx. $39 new.  ISBN: 0393702073.) Look for this book at your local library, or
g et
m
ore info about this book plus purchase links
to many countries at Global-Find-A-Book.


Love & Survival : 8 Pathways to Intimacy and Health ,
by Dean Ornish, MD. (New York: HarperCollins. 1998.)

If you are wondering about how much energy to put into close, nurturing relationships, this book will provide you with a mountain of amazing evidence that supportive relationships make a life and death difference in people’s lives.  As Dr. Andrew Weil comments, “This is the most important book ever written about love and health.”  (List price, appx $16.00  ISBN: 0060930209. Look for this book at your local library, or
g et
more info about this book plus purchase links
to many countries at
Global-Find-A-Book .

 

 


 


Violence  — origins and prevention

  
The Betrayal of the Self:

The Fear of Autonomy in Men and Women
by Arno Gruen       

Love or power — these are the opposing poles of a choice every child is compelled to make, very early in its life, in a drama that sets it irrevocably on its path through life. This startling new insight into a formative experience fundamental to our development is the subject of Dr. Arno Gruen’s pathbreaking contribution to the psychoanalytic view of the human soul, and what distorts it into pathology.

Look for this book at your local library, or
g et
more info about this book plus purchase links
to many countries at
Global-Find-A-Book .


The Insanity of Normality:
Toward Understanding Human Destructiveness

one
of the most insightful books ever written about violence
is now available in a paperback reprint of the 1992 edition.

In The
Insanity of Normality
, the psychoanalyst Arno Gruen challenges the assumption, made popular by Freud in the twentieth century, that humans are born with an innate tendency to destruction and violence.  Gruen argues instead that at the root of evil lies self-hatred, a rage originating in a self-betrayal that begins in childhood, when autonomy is surrendered in exchange for the “love” of those who wield power over us. To share in that subjugating power, we create a false self, a
pleasing-to-others image of ourselves that springs from powerful and deep-seated hopes
of being loved and fears
of being injured and humiliated.

Gruen traces this pattern of over-adaptation and smoldering rebellion through a number of case studies, sociological phenomena – from Nazism to Reaganomics – and literary works. The insanity this attitude produces, unfortunately, goes widely unrecognized precisely because it is
the same cold, manipulative “realism” that modern society inculcates into its members. Gruen warns, however, that escape from this pattern lies not simply in rebellion, for the rebel remains emotionally tied to the object of his rebellion, but in the development of a personal autonomy. His elegant and far-reaching conclusion is that while autonomy is not easily attained, its absence proves catastrophic to both individual and society.

“With compassion and conviction Dr. Gruen carefully exposes the undiagnosed and undisclosed insanity unwittingly accepted as normality… This is a text for leaders and followers, for conformists and rebels alike, for members of the healing professions who seek to repair the destructive fallout from our pursuit of normality and for all who strive for a more compassionate and saner social order.”

–Montague Ullman, M.D.

Look for this book at your local library, or
get
more info about this book plus purchase links
to many countries at
Global-Find-A-Book .


 
Preventing
Violence — Prospects for Tomorrow
,
by James
Gilligan. (NewYork: Thames and Hudson.  2001.)

In
this controversial and compassionate book, the distinguished
psychiatrist James Gilligan proposes a radically new way of
thinking about violence and how to prevent it. Violence is most
often addressed in moral and legal terms: “How evil is
this action, and how much punishment does it deserve?”
Unfortunately, this way of thinking, the basis for our legal
and political institutions, does nothing to shed light on the
causes of violence. Violent criminals have been Gilligan’s teachers,
and he has been their student. Prisons are microcosms of the
societies in which they exist, and by examining them in detail,
we can learn about society as a whole.
Gilligan suggests treating
violence as a public health problem. He advocates initiating
radical social and economic change to attack the root causes
of violence, focusing on those at increased risk of becoming
violent, and dealing with those who are already violent as if
they were in quarantine rather than in constraint for their
punishment and for society’s revenge. The twentieth century
was steeped in violence. If we attempt to understand the violence
of individuals, we may come to prevent the collective violence
that threatens our future far more than all the individual crimes
put together.  (Price: appx. $15.00.  ISBN: 039575531X. Look for this book at your local library, or
g et
more info about this book plus purchase links
to many countries at
Global-Find-A-Book .


Violence: Reflections on a National Epidemic
by James
Gilligan, MD.
    

Drawing on firsthand experience as a prison psychiatrist, his own family history, and literature, Gilligan unveils the motives of men who commit horrifying crimes, men who will not only kill others but destroy themselves rather than suffer a loss of self-respect. With devastating clarity, Gilligan traces the role that shame plays in the etiology of murder and explains why our present penal system only exacerbates it. Brilliantly argued, harrowing in its portraits of the walking dead, Violence should be read by anyone concerned with this national epidemic and its widespread consequences.

“Extraordinary. Gilligan’s recommendations concerning what does work to prevent violence…are extremely convincing…A wise and careful, enormously instructive book.”–Owen
Renik, M.D., editor, Psychoanalytic Quarterly

Look for this book at your local library, or get  m ore info about this book plus purchase links to many countries at Global-Find-A-Book .


Free  Books Online from the National Academies Press

Preventing Mental, Emotional, and Behavioral Disorders Among Young People: Progress and Possibilities

Mental health and substance use disorders among children, youth, and young adults are major threats to the health and well-being of younger populations which often carryover into adulthood. The costs of treatment for mental health and addictive disorders, which create an enormous burden on the affected individuals, their families, and society, have stimulated increasing interest in prevention practices that can impede the onset or reduce the severity of the disorders.Prevention practices have emerged in a variety of settings, including programs for selected at-risk populations (such as children and youth in the child welfare system), school-based interventions, interventions in primary care settings, and community services designed to address a broad array of mental health needs and populations.

A Study of Interactions: Emerging Issues in the Science of Adolescence

Scholars—and adults in general—have pondered for centuries the mysterious processes that influence the ways in which children gradually become adults. The word adolescence, which came into English in the 15th century, has a Latin origin, and Aristotle was an early observer who recognized adolescence as a distinct phase of life. The study of adolescence matured as a scientific endeavor during the latter half of the 20th century, and it has emerged as a distinctly interdisciplinary field of inquiry. Scholars of human development, pediatrics, psychology, sociology, anthropology, psychiatry, molecular biology, endocrinology, neuroscience, and many other fields have focused on adolescence and produced a wide range of findings. At the same time, policy makers, educators, community health specialists, and others concerned with the life challenges facing adolescents have looked for ways to use scientific findings to better serve young people and their families.

From Neurons to Neighborhoods: The Science of Early Childhood Development

Scientists have had a long-standing fascination with the complexities of the process of human development. Parents have always been captivated by the rapid growth and development that characterize the earliest years of their children’s lives. Professional service providers continue to search for new knowledge to inform their work. Consequently, one of the distinctive features of the science of early childhood development is the extent to which it evolves under the anxious and eager eyes of millions of families, policy makers, and service providers who seek authoritative guidance as they address the challenges of promoting the health and well-being of young children.

Violence in Families: Assessing Prevention and Treatment Programs

Violence in Families takes the first hard look at the successes and failures of family violence interventions. It offers recommendations to guide services, programs, policy, and research on victim support and assistance, treatments and penalties for offenders, and law envorcement. This book provides the most comprehensive review on the topic to date.

Understanding Child Abuse and Neglect

The tragedy of child abuse and neglect is in the forefront of public attention. Yet, without a conceptual framework, research in this area has been highly fragmented. Understanding the broad dimensions of this crisis has suffered as a result.
This new volume provides a comprehensive, integrated, child-oriented research agenda for the nation. The committee presents an overview of three major areas:

>> Definitions and scope–exploring standardized classifications, analysis of incidence and prevalence trends, and more.

>> Etiology, consequences, treatment, and prevention–analyzing relationships between cause and effect, reviewing prevention research with a unique systems approach, looking at short- and long-term consequences of abuse, and evaluating interventions.

>> Infrastructure and ethics–including a review of current research efforts, ways to strengthen human resources and research tools, and guidance on sensitive ethical and legal issues.

This volume will be useful to organizations involved in research, social service agencies, child advocacy groups, and researchers.

Development During Middle Childhood: The Years From Six to Twelve

For the first time, a report focuses specifically on middle childhood–a discrete, pivotal period of development. In this review of research, experts examine the physical health and cognitive development of 6- to 12-year-old children as well as their surroundings: school and home environment, ecocultural setting, and family and peer relationships.

When Children Die: Improving Palliative and End-of-Life Care for Children and Their Families

The death of a child is a special sorrow. No matter the circumstances, a child s death is a life-altering experience. Except for the child who dies suddenly and without forewarning, physicians, nurses, and other medical personnel usually play a central role in the lives of children who die and their families. At best, these professionals will exemplify medicine with a heart. At worst, families encounters with the health care system will leave them with enduring painful memories, anger, and regrets.When Children Die examines what we know about the needs of these children and their families, the extent to which such needs are and are not being met, and what can be done to provide more competent, compassionate, and consistent care. The book offers recommendations for involving child patients in treatment decisions, communicating with parents, strengthening the organization and delivery of services, developing support programs for bereaved families, improving public and private insurance, training health professionals, and more. It argues that taking these steps will improve the care of children who survive as well as those who do not and will likewise help all families who suffer with their seriously ill or injured child.Featuring illustrative case histories, the book discusses patterns of childhood death and explores the basic elements of physical, emotional, spiritual, and practical care for children and families experiencing a child s life-threatening illness or injury.