Hello and welcome to the eighty-seventh Personality Pedagogy newsletter highlighting what’s new at http://personalitypedagogy.arcadia.edu. For more about the links below and approximately 3,240 other interesting links related to personality psychology, please visit: http://personalitypedagogy.arcadia.edu.
This month, we bring you some fascinating links from many areas of personality, including how there may be an unintended side effect of deep brain stimulation (used to treat Parkinson’s and other diseases): personality change. Also, the “Science of Relationships” website has a fascinating psychoanalysis of sorts of Elsa and Anna, the sisters from the movie “Frozen”, suggesting that their rocky relationship may have been due to differing attachment styles. Finally, Dan Ariely, who’s psychoeconomic research always makes us think, presents a short video on how to encourage motivation at work. And at this point in the semester, who couldn’t use a little more motivation? If you’re in need of a smile, then check out the monkey selfies found under our Favorite Link Revisited.
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Writing for “Science of Relationships”, Jena Lempke describes how Disney’s hit movie “Frozen” depicts how varying preferences for closeness in people with different attachments styles can lead to relationship problems. She describes how the friction between the sisters Elsa (with her avoidant attachment style) and Anna (with her anxious attachment style) was caused by their different attachment styles.
“Deep Brain Stimulation (DBS) is a well-known and accepted treatment for neurological and psychiatric diseases. In Parkinson’s disease (PD), DBS clearly improves patients’ symptoms, functionality and quality of life in the long run. Nevertheless, it seems that the electrodes do not have motor-specific functions. DBS influences mental states and personality and in some cases it can even lead to a “new personality”” by increasing impulsivity. From “Brain Blogger”, October 29, 2015.
“Behavioral economist Dan Ariely says we work hard not because we have to, but because we want to. He examines the intrinsic values we need to feel motivated to work” in this TED talk from NPR, October 2, 2015. (runs 14 minutes and 52 seconds)
“There is hardly any activity, any enterprise, which is started with such tremendous hopes and expectations, and yet, which fails so regularly, as love.” Read about Erich Fromm’s book “The Art of Loving” in this essay by Maria Popova for “BrainPickings”, October 29, 2015.
“Researchers at the University of Koblenz-Landau in Germany say that a sixth personality trait,” called honesty-humility, “can predict one type of behavior that none” of the usual five-factors can: dishonesty. From “Business Insider”, June 15, 2015.
According to research by Hudson and Fraley (2015) and published in the “Journal of Personality and Social Psychology”, “people may be able to change their self-reported personality traits through volitional means, and represent a first step toward understanding the processes that enable people to do so.” This summary from “PsyBlog”, June 16, 2015.
“If you turn to many of the leading introductory psychology textbooks (American ones, at least), you’ll find the wrong answer, or a misleading account. Richard Griggs, Emeritus Professor of Psychology at the University of Florida, has just analysed the content of 23 contemporary textbooks (either released or updated within the last couple of years), and he finds most of them contain distortions, omissions and inaccuracies” when it comes to describing the life of Phineas Gage. British Psychological Society “Research Digest”, June 30, 2015.
Neuroscientists have gained new insights into how gratitude operates in the brain. Glenn Fox and his colleagues had participants read testimonies of Holocaust survivors while their brains were being scanned. They discovered that areas activated during moments of gratitude include processing reward, fairness, moral cognition, and self-reference. Published in the journal “Frontiers in Psychology”, and summarized here for “PsyBlog”, October 21, 2015.
Would true equality in education mean testing children’s genetics at the age of four, so that any learning difficulties revealed can be accommodated right from the start of primary education? Hear Robert Plomin on the role genetics play in children’s success. From “The Guardian”, July 17, 2015. (audio interview; runs 42 minutes and 46 seconds).
Laughter overrides our usual vocal and physical control to make sounds we never normally hear in any other context. Read all about this intriguing response in “The Guardian”, July 6, 2015.
Monkey Hijacks Photographer’s Camera and Shots Self-Portraits While filming macaque monkeys in an Indonesian national park, photographer David Slater lost his camera to one of his subjects. The resulting self-portraits are both comical and all too human and illustrate nicely the question of self-recognition as a uniquely human capacity.