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Author Cerulo, Karen A.

Title Never saw it coming : cultural challenges to envisioning the worst / Karen A. Cerulo
Published Chicago : University of Chicago Press, [2006]
Online access available from:
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Description 1 online resource (ix, 333 pages) : illustrations
Contents What's the worst that could happen? -- The breadth and scope of positive asymmetry -- Practicing positive asymmetry -- Positive asymmetry and the subjective side of scientific measurement -- Being labeled the worst : real in its consequences? -- Exceptions to the rule -- Emancipating structures and cognitive styles -- Can symmetrical vision be achieved?
Summary People?especially Americans?are by and large optimists. They're much better at imagining best-case scenarios (I could win the lottery!) than worst-case scenarios (A hurricane could destroy my neighborhood!). This is true not just of their approach to imagining the future, but of their memories as well: people are better able to describe the best moments of their lives than they are the worst. Though there are psychological reasons for this phenomenon, Karen A. Cerulo, in Never Saw It Coming, considers instead the role of society in fostering this attitude. What kinds of communities develop this
Bibliography Includes bibliographical references (pages 279-314) and index
Notes Print version record
Subject Catastrophical, The.
Cognition and culture.
Knowledge, Sociology of.
Social psychology.
Form Electronic book
LC no. 2006002487
ISBN 0226100294 (electronic bk.)
9780226100296 (electronic bk.)