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Great Myths of Personality. Edition No. 1. Great Myths of Psychology

  • Book

  • 272 Pages
  • March 2021
  • John Wiley and Sons Ltd
  • ID: 5230493

Great Myths of Personality teaches critical thinking skills and key concepts of personality psychology through the discussion of popular myths and misconceptions.

  • Provides a thorough look at contemporary myths and misconceptions, such as: Does birth order affect personality? Are personality tests an accurate way to measure personality? Do romantic partners need similar personalities for relationship success?
  • Introduces concepts of personality psychology in an accessible and engaging manner
  • Focuses on current debates and controversies in the field with references to the latest research and scientific literature

Table of Contents

Introduction 1

1 Situational Factors Overwhelm Personality When Predicting Behavior 13

2 Personality Measures Do Not Predict Consequential Outcomes (Like Health, Wealth, and Divorce) Well Enough to Be Useful 25

3 There is a Single Gene for a Single Personality Trait 35

4 Evolutionary Perspectives Are Not Relevant for Personality 43

5 People Come in Discrete Personality Types 51

6 Personality is Too Complicated to Be Measured 59

7 Personality Measures Can Be Faked So They Are Not Valid 69

8 The Myers-Briggs Type Indicator is the Best Approach for Assessing Personality 77

9 Projective Tests Are the Best Approach for Measuring Personality 85

10 Unstructured Interviews are the Best Approach for Measuring Personality 93

11 Most Personality Quizzes in Magazines and on Websites Provide Accurate Information About Your Personality 101

12 Personality Traits Do Not Have Much Consistency Across the Life Span 111

13 Personality is Completely Stable (or Set Like Plaster) After Age 30 119

14 Traumatic Life Events Dramatically Reshape Personality 127

15 Adolescence is the Most Significant Period of Personality Development 135

16 Birth Order is an Important Influence on Personality 141

17 Parenting Practices Are the Major Source of Personality Differences 149

18 Happiness is Completely Determined by Situational Factors 157

19 Happiness is Unrelated to Major Life Events 167

20 Happiness Results Primarily From Person-Environment Fit 179

21 There is a 3-to-1 Positivity-to-Negativity Ratio for Flourishing 189

22 Personality Trait Similarity Matters for Romantic Relationships 195

23 Spouses Are Especially Similar in Terms of Personality Traits or Spouses Have Complementary Personality Traits 203

24 High Self-Esteem and Narcissism Are the Same Attribute 209

25 Perceptions of National Character Reflect “Real” Group Differences 217

26 Personality is Radically Different From Culture to Culture 225

27 Men Are From Mars, Women Are From Venus (Men and Women Have Dramatically Different Personalities) 235

28 Clinicians Can’t Treat Personality Disorders 243

Index 257


M. Brent Donnellan Michigan State University. Richard E. Lucas Michigan State University.