Going Broke

Going Broke : Why Americans Can't Hold on to Their Money

3.4 (35 ratings by Goodreads)
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Description

The fact that more and more people are in financial turmoil in one of the most affluent societies in the world is of both great interest and major concern. Bankruptcy rates in the United States have steadily increased over the past 30 years, reaching all-time highs. Home foreclosures are at record levels, and the personal savings rate is at its lowest point since the Great Depression. This timely and important volume is a fascinating combination of psychological inquiry and sociological commentary. Its essential premise is that the financial failures of so many Americans today are the inevitable byproduct of singularly unique, contemporary social and economic policies whose underlying purpose is to undermine and indeed to denigrate self-control. Bringing together research from the psychological science of self-control and consumer behavior, as well as from behavioral economics, the book surveys how broad social and economic changes over the last 30 years have affected our relationship with money, from the rise of consumer credit to the increase in gambling venues to the expansion of new shopping and spending opportunities provided by the Internet.
It concludes both with personal advice for the individual who wants to achieve greater financial stability and with pointed policy recommendations for economic and social change that will help promote the financial health of all Americans. Engagingly written, with startling insights about the dynamics of modern consumerism and with poignant human-interest stories of people the author encountered in bankruptcy court, Going Broke challenges dominant American economic philosophy and, as a result, is likely to stir controversy and serious debate in the public forum.
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Product details

  • Hardback | 368 pages
  • 162.56 x 236.22 x 25.4mm | 521.63g
  • New York, United States
  • English
  • 0195306996
  • 9780195306996
  • 1,769,853

Review quote

"In this lucidly-written and very timely book, Vyse has brought recent empirical research by psychologists and economists to bear on the question of why so many people are currently getting themselves into unmanageable debt. Vyse makes astute suggestions as to what we can do individually and collectively to reverse this frightening situation. I highly recommend the book to anyone who is currently in such straits or who is in danger of getting into them -- and, as Vyse makes clear, that could be any of us." -Howard Rachlin, PhD, Psychology Department, SUNY Stony Brook "In this lucidly-written and very timely book, Vyse has brought recent empirical research by psychologists and economists to bear on the question of why so many people are currently getting themselves into unmanageable debt. Vyse makes astute suggestions as to what we can do individually and collectively to reverse this frightening situation. I highly recommend the book to anyone who is currently in such straits or who is in danger of getting into them -- and, as Vyse makes clear, that could be any of us." -Howard Rachlin, PhD, Psychology Department, SUNY Stony Brook "In this lucidly-written and very timely book, Vyse has brought recent empirical research by psychologists and economists to bear on the question of why so many people are currently getting themselves into unmanageable debt. Vyse makes astute suggestions as to what we can do individually and collectively to reverse this frightening situation. I highly recommend the book to anyone who is currently in such straits or who is in danger of getting into them -- and, as Vyse makes clear, that could be any of us." -Howard Rachlin, PhD, Psychology Department, SUNY Stony Brook "In this lucidly-written and very timely book, Vyse has brought recent empirical research by psychologists and economists to bear on the question of why so many people are currently getting themselves into unmanageable debt. Vyse makes astute suggestions as to what we can do individually and
collectively to reverse this frightening situation. I highly recommend the book to anyone who is currently in such straits or who is in danger of getting into them -- and, as Vyse makes clear, that could be any of us." -Howard Rachlin, PhD, Psychology Department, SUNY Stony Brook
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About Stuart A. Vyse

Stuart Vyse is Professor of Psychology at Connecticut College, in New London. He is the author of Believing in Magic: The Psychology of Superstition, which won the prestigious William James Book Award in 1999.
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Table of contents

1. The Open Drain: David ; 2. Making Sense of Financial Failure: Susan ; 3. The Story of Bankruptcy: Caroline ; 4. Self-Control and Money: Sylvia ; 5. A Different Story of Bankruptcy: Kathy ; 6. New Ways of Wanting: Frank ; 7. New Ways of Spending: Marcia and Joel ; 8. Thinking About Money: Neil ; 9. How Not to Go Broke ; Notes ; Resources ; Acknowledgments ; Index
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Rating details

35 ratings
3.4 out of 5 stars
5 14% (5)
4 29% (10)
3 40% (14)
2 17% (6)
1 0% (0)
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