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Book Reviews

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Perigee Trade, 2014, 272 pages

Why Empathy Matters

By Jill Suttie | November 21, 2014

A new book argues that empathy can be a radical force for social change.

 
  

Past Stories

The Teenage Opportunity

By Diana Divecha | October 28, 2014

A new book argues that America’s approach to raising adolescents is a mix of misunderstanding and contradiction.

 
Routledge, 2014. 243 pages.

What is a Good Life?

By Jill Suttie | October 1, 2014

A new book explores what we know and don’t yet know about human nature and the role of the environment in shaping our moral character.

 
Joshua Wolf Shenk

The Social Artist

By Jill Suttie | September 23, 2014

A new book argues that creativity can be—and often is—a social endeavor, rather than the work of a lone genius.

 

Can Suffering Lead to Success?

By Jill Suttie | September 3, 2014

A new book explores when trauma triggers growth—and when it doesn't.

 
DeCapo Press, 2014, 268 pages

Taking on the Myth of the Spoiled Child

By Jill Suttie | August 14, 2014

A new book questions claims that today's kids are more spoiled and narcissistic than previous generations.

 

Why Won’t Your Teen Talk To You?

By Jill Suttie | July 30, 2014

A new book explains the many reasons why teens seem to shut down, even when they especially need parental support.

 

How to Cultivate Well-Being in Teachers and Students

By Jill Suttie | July 21, 2014

A new book argues that there is something simple we can do to close achievement gaps: teach mindfulness in schools.

 

Making Mindfulness Part of Therapy

By Jill Suttie | June 23, 2014

A new book explores when and how therapists can incorporate moment-to-moment, non-judgmental attention into their practice.

 
New Harbinger, 2014, 199 pages

How Parents Can Keep Their Cool

By Jill Suttie | June 3, 2014

Two new books tackle the problem of raising difficult kids, offering solutions that are both more compassionate and successful than harsh discipline.

 
Basic Books, 2014, 230 pages

Why Do We Laugh?

By Jill Suttie | May 28, 2014

A new book explains what humor is, how things become funny, and why evolution gave us laughter.

 
Hudson Street Press, 266 pages, 2014

What’s the Truth about Trust?

By Jill Suttie | May 21, 2014

A new book says that trustworthiness is a moving target, dependent on our moods, circumstances, and competing needs.

 
Templeton Press, 2014, 264 pages

How to Make Grateful Kids

By Jill Suttie | April 15, 2014

A new book argues that parents can foster gratitude in kids—but it takes effort and time.

 
The Experiment,  2014, 243 pages

Does Nature Select for Nice?

By Joseph Ferrell | March 26, 2014

A new book argues that selflessness, not selfishness, creates more genetic success.

 

How Your Teen Can Thrive Online

By Diana Divecha | March 18, 2014

Two new books look at how the Internet is affecting teens—and what adults can do to help foster a healthy online life for kids.

 
Knopf, 2014, 242 pages

When Empathy Fails

By Jill Suttie | March 4, 2014

Humans brains are very attuned to what others are thinking, feeling, and planning—but a new book explores when our “mindreading” powers can lead us astray.

 

When is Parenting All Joy and No Fun?

By Jill Suttie | February 20, 2014

A new book explores why contemporary parenthood can be so stressful—and at the same time so meaningful.

 
Tarcher, 2014, 336 pages

A Journey into the Teenage Brain

By Diana Divecha | January 27, 2014

Daniel Siegel's new book reveals the "power and purpose" of the adolescent brain.

 

Six Books We Overlooked in 2013

By Jill Suttie, Jeremy Adam Smith | January 7, 2014

Good books about the science of meaningful life that we wish we had reviewed last year!

 
Basic Books, 2013, 268 pages

What if You Can Judge a Book by its Cover?

By Jill Suttie | December 27, 2013

A new book explores the mind’s powers of split-second social observation.

 
To learn more, read this Q&A with Daniel Goleman about Focus in Greater Good!

Our Favorite Books of 2013

By Jill Suttie, Jeremy Adam Smith, Jason Marsh | December 16, 2013

Greater Good's editors pick the most thought-provoking, important, or useful nonfiction books published this year on the science of a meaningful life.

 
Crown, 2013, 288 pages

The Moralist in the Crib

By Diana Divecha | December 11, 2013

Are children blank slates or selfish monsters? A new book draws on decades of research to argue that we are born with a bias toward goodness.

 
Crown, 2013, 374 pages

Why Are We So Wired to Connect?

By Jill Suttie | December 2, 2013

A new book outlines the evidence for the primacy of social connections in our lives, and presents guidelines improving workplaces, schools, and personal well-being.

 
Basic Books, 2013, 397 pages.

Who is Gifted?

By Jill Suttie | October 22, 2013

A new book argues that other factors, besides IQ, are important in academic success and in life.

 
Harper, 2013, 320 pages

Are We Losing Our Focus?

By Jill Suttie | October 9, 2013

In a new book, Daniel Goleman argues that focus leads to greater happiness, better relationships, and increased productivity.

 
Beacon Press, 2013, 224 pages

Should Your Doctor Care About You?

By Jill Suttie | October 4, 2013

A new book explains the role emotions play in medical care.

 
Current (the Penguin Group), 2013, 225 pages

Where Do Heroes Come From?

By Jill Suttie | August 28, 2013

Why do some of us make sacrifices for others? A new book explores the science of selflessness.

 
SharpBrains, Inc, 2013, 284 pages

How to Keep Your Brain Sharp

By Jill Suttie | July 30, 2013

A new book explores how to optimize brain health through all the stages of life.

 
W. W. Norton & Company, 2013, 304 pages

Finding Morality in Animals

By Jill Suttie | July 9, 2013

Two new books explore research on animals to better understand the roots of human morality and challenge human specialness.

 
Workman Publishing Company, 2013, 304 pages

Will Our Grown-Up Kids Ever Grow Up?

By Diana Divecha | June 24, 2013

A new book explores how to parent today's young adults, who are struggling to become established and independent.

 
2013, Constable & Robinson (Kindle edition)

Mindfully Compassionate

By Jill Suttie | June 7, 2013

A new book highlights how mindfulness can help improve social relationships and nurture compassion toward oneself and others.

 

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First Congregational Church of Berkeley
December 4, 2014


A Path Appears: Nicholas Kristof & Sheryl WuDunn

New York Times op-ed columnist Kristof and reporter Sheryl WuDunn talk about their new book, A Path Appears: Transforming Lives, Creating Opportunity. Presented by the Greater Good Science Center and Berkeley Arts & Letters


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Book of the Week

The Psychology of Gratitude By Robert A. Emmons and Michael E. McCullough This is a collection of academic articles on the science of gratitude.

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Best-selling author and founder of the Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction program

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