The Science of Thought Control
Publishing House: Paralela 45,
Author : Kathleen Taylor
In this book, Kathleen Taylor combines neuroscience and the social psychology, and by using numerous examples and study cases, she examines the consequences generated by the experiments performed on human subjects, alongside with the implications generated by such research.
The book is divided in three parts, as follows:
Part I (chapters 1 to 6), "Torture and Seduction", refers to the history and social psychology of brainwashing and it investigates several domains such as: religion, politics, education, mental health, the military, the criminal justice system, media and commercials, torture and domestic violence. Whether she refers to individuals, small groups or entire societies, the author believes that "brainwashing" is achieved by using force, misleading or by combining both methods. We believe that the power of our mind is given by reason, that we let the other influence us or not, but we have to understand how brainwashing is done.
Part II, "The traitor in your skull" (chapters 7 to 11), deals with neuroscience. Kathleen Taylor is warning us it is the most difficult part of the book and enumerates the topics it includes: brain changing, beliefs, emotions, the way the brain generates facts, self-control and free will. The author concludes that "rather, human beings are born and then made; self-fashioned, of course, but also hugely shaped by social circumstances- especially the ideas we take from our societies and the emotions we take them with. We underestimate the extent to which even the light forms of influence can change the way we think and act".
Part III, "Freedom and Control" is an investigation of these two concepts (freedom and control) in the brainwashing process. Chapter 12 deals with brainwashing at individual level and asks five questions: what makes some people more vulnerable, whereas others seem to resist better and longer? The second question is about the brainwashing methods, and what we learn from neuroscience and psychology about the most efficient techniques to achieve our goal and what individuals are the most malleable. Chapter 13, entitled "Mind factories" answers the third question, about the possibility of mass mind control (in society). If the previous chapters dealt with brainwashing by force, here we find references to more insidious forms of manipulation, brainwashing by deceit and lie, used by the states to spread ideas with which their own citizens could be controlled. Chapter 14 deals with the new brainwashing techniques, and an answer is sought for the question whether the abyss between dream and reality can be passed. Chapter 15 deals with the final question: how could we resist to brainwashing and how could we reduce the threats to minimum?
The book explores the history of thought control, and is also a thorough study of this mysterious and scary technique - brainwashing.
- Published in 2008-12-07
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