By Robert E. Bartholomew, Peter Hassall
This eclectic historical past of bizarre crowd habit describes a wealthy collection of mass phenomena starting from the a laugh and quirky to the surprising and deplorable. What do fads, crazes, manias, city legends, ethical panics, riots, stampedes, and different mass expressions of emotion have in universal? by means of making a typology of such habit, previous and current, the authors exhibit how universal notable team reactions to worry or pleasure are. they usually supply insights into how those occasionally harmful mob responses may be shunned.
We will not be shocked to examine the peculiarities of the ecu heart a while, whilst superstition used to be usual: just like the meowing nuns of France, "tarantism" (a dancing mania) in Italy, or the malicious anti-Semitic poison-well scares. yet related phenomena appear in our personal period. Examples contain the social-networking hysteria of 2012, which led to uncontrollable twitching through teenage ladies in Leroy, long island; the "phantom bus terrorist" of 2004 in Vancouver, Canada; and the itching outbreak of 2000 in South Africa.
Vivid, certain, and punctiliously researched, it is a attention-grabbing evaluation of collective human habit in its many strange forms.
From the exchange Paperback edition.
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Extra resources for A Colorful History of Popular Delusions
One main reason why beliefs, emotions, motives, and desires may be mistaken is that something has gone wrong with our commitments to values and limits. Correcting mistaken attitudes, then, depends, among other things, on correcting whatever has gone wrong with these commitments.
Our humanity does not depend on the presence of this one kind of internal cause. It depends on the combined presence of a wide variety of conditions, such as having a human body, needing to satisfy certain physiological and psychological needs that are Increasing Control 45 typical of our species, being able to reproduce our kind, having a certain DNA structure, using language, learning from the past, and planning for the future, and so forth. It is a simple and dangerous mistake to deny the humanity of those who have these characteristics, but do not reﬂect critically.
The variable approach to increasing our control is to try to change some of the internal conditions, namely, the psychological ones. Among them are the attitudes—composed of beliefs, emotions, and motives focusing on our desires and their satisfactions—that prompt our actions. We are alike in having such attitudes, but we are unalike in the particular attitudes we have and in the actions they prompt. Because we vary in these respects, what we can and what we should do to increase our control over these internal psychological conditions varies with persons and circumstances.