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Download Heroes, Rogues, & Lovers: Testosterone and Behavior epub

by James McBride Dabbs

Testosterone has been the misunderstood human hormone since the early 1970s, blamed for everything to rape to low intelligence to road rage. But the authors argue that the picture is more complex: testosterone is related to things as diverse as criminal violence and the way people smile; it affects our language ability and the way we navigate in the space around us; it helps predict what occupation we will enter and whether or not we will marry, have extra-marital affairs, and divorce. It affects both men and women. Culled from over 20 years of research on the subject, this text is the story of what we know and what we are learning about testosterone - from its role in human evolution, to its links between animal and human nature, to its connections with violence, attraction, and social interaction.
Download Heroes, Rogues, & Lovers: Testosterone and Behavior epub
ISBN: 0071376283
ISBN13: 978-0071376280
Category: Fitness
Subcategory: Psychology & Counseling
Author: James McBride Dabbs
Language: English
Publisher: McGraw-Hill Companies (August 15, 2001)
Pages: 288 pages
ePUB size: 1413 kb
FB2 size: 1154 kb
Rating: 4.1
Votes: 660
Other Formats: docx mobi azw rtf

I anticipated this book to be a rather boring scientific report of research data, but found instead a very enjoyable read. James McBride Dabbs along with a helping hand from his wife, Mary, have done a credible job of reporting data from 8,000 "spit tests" and correlating behavior traits with testosterone levels. Some conclusions may seem to be "obvious" but others surprised me.. I actually enjoyed his casual introduction of family and friends into the study. It provided a personal involvement that appealed to me. The book is engaging, informative and easy to read...something unique in scientific research reports. I'm pleased I was able to obtain it through Amazon as it's not as easy to access as it used to be.
This book is a mixed bag of facts and conjecture. The parts of the book that are most unappealing and lack scientific merit are the author's use of his friends, family and fictional characters to explain the impact of testosterone on behavior. Dabbs' continuous reference to his and his students' testosterone studies without disclosing details and whether any scientific peer reviews were published or conducted calls into question the credibility of his book. It seems as if he and his students set out to prove their hypotheses by doing little more than soliciting spit tests and celebrating the results.

For much of the book, Dabbs opines negatively of high testosterone men. High testosterone has lost its place in modern society, he argues. More successful and educated white color workers have lower testosterone levels than less educated, lower income but higher testosterone blue color workers. Towards the end, however, he raises the specter of channeling the effects of this powerful hormone to positive outcomes such as altruism and heroism. Proper upbringing and social activities can curb the negative tendencies of high testosterone individuals.

In the epilogue, Dabbs admits to the complexity of nature vs. nature analytics and the extent to which testosterone influences behavior. But certain assertions are "clearly established" he claims: Testosterone increases muscle strength, sexual activity, delinquency and marital instability. Other connections, which he claims are less certain include occupation choice, e.g. actors and athletes have high testosterone levels, sex differences, e.g. women maintain lasting relationships while men drop strong loyalties when they change jobs or sports teams, and the nature of heroism and altruism. This is the area the author dabbles in the most, and unfortunately, because of the lack of depth, Dabbs' arguments are not presented in a convincing or thoughtful way.

Robert M. Sapolskly accomplishes in one chapter of his book "The Trouble With Tetosterone" more than Dabbs' entire book.
The author strings together a well researched cache of interesting anecdotes which do a great job a grabbing your attention and illustrating the point. However, he never goes into any of the bio-chemistry of how it all works. So, I guess its more of a sociology oriented book. But it never realy goes anywhere.

Factoids like "men with high testoterone are more aggressive, and more likely to beat their wives etc. etc." didn't give me much to chew on. I did enjoy the statistic that shows that high level corporate types who have successfully clawed their way to the top are not necessarily high in testosterone, though they might think they are... (they actually "relationship" their way up -- which should be good news for women execs). I thought about the execs I know and laughed.

Ah well.
A solid study of testosterone's role in our society and how it plays out in occupations, relationships, social behavior, etc. We all know the stereotypes but perhaps don't truly understand the "semi-concious" force of testosterone in the everyday male and how it affects interaction or how its positive traits are suppressed daily, largely by the framework of society, from early childhood on. Heroes is well-written without being overly academic and offers both a historical review of its champions and a modern perspective of testosterone as an operating agent in today's day and age, amongst individuals and groups of individuals.

It seems if we don't allow testosterone to "do it's thing", the affects of suppression remain invalid as a solution to every act of rebellion, whether criminal or heroic. Furthermore, it would seem redirecting this formidable agent of human behavior, could greater benefit society, then the approach we've adopted today. In other words, we can't let a system suffocate and prevail over an aspect of human nature--human survival--and expect its cause to go away; we should reassess the situation, and shift the paradigm towards one which celebrates the positive aspects of testosterone's effects--using it as a means to an end--instead of outright debilitating it altogether.

A great question for a "sequel": What is the role of testosterone in today's society? As it stands today, I'm sure it's ill-boding and maligned...
There are many questions answered or at list put in a new perspective by this book. It is well researched and presents an entertaining and informative view of testosterone and evolution. It explores in detail everything you did not know you wanted to know about Testosteron. Overall, an enjoyable and informative read.