Jacques Van Rillaer

The Psychology of Everyday Life Publication date : January 4, 2017

One of the basic characteristics of scientific psychology is that it applies the rules of empirical science. First, data are carefully observed. Then, hypotheses are formulated and later methodically checked. Those hypotheses that are confirmed are kept, the others rejected or modified.
The author reviews here the progress made by scientific psychology since the 1960s, and draws a series of conclusions on subjects that concern all of us in our daily lives, such as:
- Who are we? What is consciousness? How can we understand one another better?
- How can phobias and obsessions be explained?
- Why do we so often make the same mistakes? Are we so powerfully determined by our past experiences?
- Can we, unwittingly, create false memories and false evidence? To what extent can subliminal messages influence us?
- Can words liberate us from emotional suffering?

This is a straightforward, honest and precise work, which reviews scientific psychology today. It addresses the question whether psychology can really help us manage our lives and become happier.

Jacques Van Rillaer teaches at the University of Louvain-la-Neuve and at Saint-Louis University in Brussels. He was a practising psychoanalyst for ten years, before adopting behavioural and cognitive therapies.