Self-Esteem Research, Theory, and Practice: Toward a Positive Psychology of Self-Esteem

Self-Esteem Research, Theory, and Practice: Toward a Positive Psychology of Self-Esteem

Self-Esteem Research, Theory, and Practice: Toward a Positive Psychology of Self-Esteem

Self-Esteem Research, Theory, and Practice: Toward a Positive Psychology of Self-Esteem

Synopsis


Dr. Mruk has produced a highly readable new edition of his original work on an often misunderstood psychological construct--self-esteem. Mruk's view that self-esteem is a critically important influence on psychological adjustment and quality of life is now an accepted tenet in personality theory. Lack of self-esteem is frequently a precursor to depression, suicidal behavior, and other personality disorders. Nonetheless, the clinical diagnosis of self-esteem problems has lacked the basis of an overarching theory. Dr. Mruk's comprehensive analysis distills the literature on self-esteem into practical and reliable treatment methods for both clinicians and researchers. The new edition contains updated research and current terms, and addresses the self-esteem ""backlash."" He concludes with worksheets and detailed guidelines for conducting self-esteem building workshops.

Added features include:
  • Major theories of self-esteem
  • Chapter on the new positive psychology
  • 150 new references

Dr. Mruk has developed a writing style that is successfully oriented toward both academic and clinical audiences in the areas of counseling, education, nursing, psychology, and social work, thus providing much-needed information for teachers, students, and practicing clinicians in a clear, concise way.

Excerpt

One of the most striking things about the field of self-esteem is its vitality and resilience as a topic for social scientists and clinicians alike. For example, if history is an indication of the significance of a phenomenon, then self-esteem easily stands out as an important subject. After all, William James (1890/1983) first introduced the topic more than a century ago in what is often regarded as the first American textbook on psychology, which makes self-esteem one of the oldest themes in social science, at least in this country. In addition to historical depth, the breadth of a topic, or how much attention it receives, is another good indicator of vitality. Even a cursory database search of PsychlNFO will reveal that in the time between James' work and this investigation, scholars, researchers, and practitioners have written more than 23,215 articles, chapters, and books that directly focus on self-esteem as a crucial factor in human behavior. The fact that the number seems to grow substantially each time the database is updated further supports the claim that self-esteem is a basic, if not fundamental, topic in the social sciences. In fact, Rodewalt and Tragakis (2003, p. 66) stated that self-esteem is one of the β€œtop three covariates in personality and social psychology research,” along with gender and negative affectivity. The ability to endure controversy is another good indicator of importance, and selfesteem appears to be resilient in this regard as well. Indeed, we shall see that work on self-esteem is characterized by a diversity of opinion strong enough to generate a lively and continuing exchange among researchers, theorists, and laypeople alike. Self-esteem is one of those rare topics for which controversy, even heated controversy, only seems to stimulate more interest in the subject over time. When all things are considered, then . . .

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