The Power Paradox by Dacher Keltner
How We Gain and Lose Influence

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Keltner, whose earlier work on emotions informed the Pixar movie Inside Out, marshals copper-bottomed evidence for his argument. Unfortunately, he also suffers from a severe case of counterintuitivitis, insisting that his findings show our existing ideas of power to be utterly wrongheaded. But they don’t.
-Guardian

Synopsis

A revolutionary and timely reconsideration of everything we know about power. Celebrated UC Berkeley psychologist Dr. Dacher Keltner argues that compassion and selflessness enable us to have the most influence over others and the result is power as a force for good in the world.

It is taken for granted that power corrupts. This is reinforced culturally by everything from Machiavelli to contemporary politics. But how do we get power? And how does it change our behavior? So often, in spite of our best intentions, we lose our hard-won power. Enduring power comes from empathy and giving. Above all, power is given to us by other people. This is what all-too-often we forget, and what Dr. Keltner sets straight. This is the crux of the power paradox: by fundamentally misunderstanding the behaviors that helped us to gain power in the first place we set ourselves up to fall from power. We can't retain power because we've never understood it correctly, until now. Power isn't the capacity to act in cruel and uncaring ways; it is the ability to do good for others, expressed in daily life, and itself a good a thing.

Dr. Keltner lays out exactly--in twenty original "Power Principles"-- how to retain power, why power can be a demonstrably good thing, and the terrible consequences of letting those around us languish in powerlessness.
 

About Dacher Keltner

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Dacher Keltner is Professor of Psychology and the Director of the Greater Good Science Center at the University of California, Berkeley. He has taught social psychology for the past 18 years and is the recipient of the Distinguished Teaching Award for Letters and Sciences. His research focuses on the prosocial emotions (such as love, sympathy, and gratitude), morality, and power. Other awards include the Western Psychological Association's award for outstanding contribution to research, the Positive Psychology Prize for excellence in research, and the Distinguished Mentoring Award at UC Berkeley. He is a fellow of the American Psychological Association, the American Psychological Society, and the Society for Personality and Social Psychology. In 2008, the Utne Reader listed Dacher as one of the 50 visionaries changing the world.
 
Published May 17, 2016 by Penguin Press. 162 pages
Genres: Health, Fitness & Dieting, Political & Social Sciences, Self Help, Parenting & Relationships, Professional & Technical. Non-fiction
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Guardian

Below average
Reviewed by Oliver Burkeman on May 18 2016

Keltner, whose earlier work on emotions informed the Pixar movie Inside Out, marshals copper-bottomed evidence for his argument. Unfortunately, he also suffers from a severe case of counterintuitivitis, insisting that his findings show our existing ideas of power to be utterly wrongheaded. But they don’t.

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