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Tuesday, October 14, 2003
Roy F. Baumeister
I just ordered several books by this guy, about whom I knew nothing except for the Amazon writeups. Just now checking his CV, I encountered this...
"After graduating from Princeton, Roy F. Baumeister never parachuted out of an airplane or swam the English channel. He never participated in terrorist bombing campaigns or international money laundering. He never had sex (not even oral sex) with White House interns. Too bad. He was never involved in any high-tech shootouts with postal workers. He was not taken hostage during 1988. He did not found an esoteric religious cult in which group members participated in bizarre rituals with mass nude chanting (of Roy's spiritual name) and poisonous snakes. He did not pillage Skokie. He did not write any rhymed verse in Portuguese. He is not a lesbian. He does not remember being abducted into flying saucers for medical experiments. He has never impersonated a census worker. He was not seriously injured during a volcano eruption. He has never worn one of those yellow ties with little black dots. DNA tests did not conclusively prove that Baumeister fathered a two-headed baby named Phil. He has never knowingly eaten blowfish. He never appeared on the Jerry Springer show or refused an invitation to join the Spice Girls. He did not serve as head of the chamber of commerce of Butte, Montana. He has never publicly claimed to be an expert on horticulture or even to know what that means. He is not in communication with space aliens by means of tiny radio transmitters implanted in his molars. He does not have a "thing" about shrubs. He is not responsible for global warming, nor has he publicly come out in support of it. He has never said the word "Jeepers." He does not know any of the really big prime numbers. He has never spanked a supermodel. He has never had a corndog."Aside from the books (see Evil post from several days ago), he seems to have written some interesting stuff on my favorite topic: self esteem. Which is, more often than not, a code-word for a culturally dressed up -- if with still no place to go -- narcissism.
Baumeister, R.F., Heatherton, T.F., & Tice, D.M. (1993). When ego threats lead to self-regulation failure: Negative consequences of high self-esteem. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 64, 141-156.
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