Heal and enhance the quality of life across the world

Print Pdf

provv3

The American Psychological Association, the world’s largest professional organization of psychologists, is developing a book, Hate in the Modern World: What It Is, Where It Comes From, and What to Do About it, under the editorship of one of the most eminent psychologists in the history of the field, Professor Robert J. Sternberg.  The book will certainly have a major influence on the ways in which scientists and policy makers can understand the bases of hate and, in turn, the ways in which they may act to diminish hate around the world.

Our Academician Richard Lerner and his colleague, Paul Chase, have written the chapter  "Hate in Contemporary America: Pathology or Opportunism?". In this chapter the two Authors discuss for actions to diminish hate in the world to be of interest because they frame their ideas by using a portion of the speech to the PAV made by Pope Francis last June (2018).

The full citation for the book is: Sternberg, R. J. (Ed.). (in press). Hate in the Modern World: What It Is, Where It Comes From, and What to Do About it. Washington, D.C.: American Psychological Association.

From the Introduction of the Lerner-Chase's chapter:

"In this chapter, we discuss the purported attributes of the authoritarian personality or, of people who hate others not like them so strongly and without exception that acts of violence or even murder are regarded as appropriate. We describe two possible bases of such hatred: pathological prejudice and normal prejudice; and we speculate about the bases of people falling into a group defined by one or the other type of hatred. In addition, we discuss a third group:  people who may or may not actually hate members of an out-group but who, nevertheless, act to exacerbate hatred as a tool to incite members of the other two groups into committing hateful acts. 

The people in this third group act to promote hatred in the first two groups to maintain or enhance their political or economic power and/or influence over the institutions of society. For instance, De Figueiredo and Weingast (1999) claimed that the genocide of the Tutsi minority was a result of political opportunism by Hutu politicians and that it was enacted in an attempt to maintain political control in Rwanda. Thus, this third group includes authoritarian leaders of the world or their abettors. We describe the sorts of actions taken by these “tool users” and the consequences of these actions for both democracy in America, and for the historical role of America as a model and motivator for democracy in the world (a role that is arguably not being fulfilled at this writing, at least from the perspective of many U.S. citizens and of international allies). Finally, we describe a set of actions that may contribute to diminishing hate in contemporary America and in the world". 

In addition, Professor Sternberg and his colleague, Karin Sternberg, have recently published a companion book The New Psychology of Love. –   

Together, the two books constitute important means through which the scientific community can contribution to knowledge, programs, and policies that will help both heal and enhance the quality of life across the world, respectively.