About the Book:
Our emotions and decisions are tremendously influenced by the stories told by our self-selected communities. Our moods, ideas, and even our perceptions of reality effortlessly synchronize. Tribes can coalesce around any topic, belief structure, or shared experience. This in-group bonding can be positive, as in the case of crowd funded campaigns to support natural disaster victims, but it can also send us down a path of echo chambers and political polarization and conspiracy theories. The deeply intrinsic sociality of human beings plays into the narrative that shape our reality; and that narrative is constantly shifting. The advent of social media and smartphones has amplified these tendencies in ways that spell both promise and confusion. Cavanagh's fascinating book, Hivemind, samples work from as divergent fields as neuroscience and speculative fiction to find ways to cut through our online tribalism and move us back to the larger world. She leaves no stone unturned in her quest to understand how social technology is reshaping our collective selves and what we can do to come back from the polarized brink.
With compelling storytelling and shocking research, Hivemind is a must read for anyone who would like to make sense of the madness around us.
About the Author
Dr. Sarah Rose Cavanagh is a psychologist, professor, writer, and Associate Director for grants and research for the Center for Teaching Excellence at Assumption College. Her research focuses on affective science, specifically emotion regulation and mood and anxiety disorders. Dr. Cavanagh is the author of The Spark of Learning: Energizing the College Classroom with the Science of Emotion, and she's been contributed to publications like Motherboard and Darling Magazine. She lives in Massachusetts.