Two on Cons: The Confidence Game and Confident Women

The Confidence Game, by Maria Konnikova (Viking, 2016) Psychologist Konnikova takes a pop psych look at a subject so many of us find magnetically fascinating - con artists and why their manipulations work. She breaks down some of the psychology behind cons and the beliefs and tendencies in the average person that these play to,... Continue Reading →

A Housewife’s Haunting

The Haunting of Alma Fielding: A True Ghost Story, by Kate Summerscale Some events are so dark that to find them is an act of imagination as much as memory. In 1938, as a storm gathered on the continent and Europe braced for something coming, yet unknown but surely terrible, in England a 34-year-old housewife... Continue Reading →

Conning Culture: Hype in the Social Media Age

Hype: How Scammers, Grifters, and Con Artists Are Taking Over the Internet―and Why We're Following The story of the Fyre Festival, which saw Instagram influencers tricked into promoting a music festival on a private Bahamian island with luxury accommodations, gourmet dining and a picturesque setting, only to turn out to be a few rain-soaked tents... Continue Reading →

Recent Release Minis: Nobody’s Normal, Made in China, You’ll Never Believe What happened to Lacey

Psychiatry, prison-camp manufactured Chinese goods, and racist tales from Nebraska. What a grab bag today. Let's dive in! Nobody's Normal: How Culture Created the Stigma of Mental Illness, by Roy Richard Grinkerpublished January 26, 2021 by W.W. Norton Only recently did mental illnesses brand the whole person, not just his or her behavior, with what['s...]... Continue Reading →

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