Psychology is increasingly widespread: we find it in magazine and newspaper columns, television programmes, talk shows and on the web. Despite its pervasiveness, psychology – unlike many other fields of science – features a separation between its common sense and scientific versions. Everyone believes that it is impossible to read and understand a physics textbook without some prior basic knowledge, but this is not true for psychology. At least to a certain extent, we all feel that we’re psychologists. Yet scientific psychology differs significantly from its common-sense variety and allows us to discover unexpected things about ourselves. This book describes several well-known experiments that reveal how our ways of perceiving, thinking and relating to one another are not as clear as we believe.
Paolo Legrenzi is professor emeritus of Psychology at the Ca’ Foscari University in Venice.
Alessandra Jacomuzzi teaches General Psychology at the Ca’ Foscari University in Venice.