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Publisher's Summary

Over 40 years ago, Games People Play revolutionized our understanding of what really goes on during our most basic social interactions. More than five million copies later, Dr. Eric Berne's classic is as astonishing and revealing as it was on the day it was first published. We play games all the time---sexual games, marital games, power games with our bosses, and competitive games with our friends. Detailing status contests like "Martini" (I know a better way), to lethal couples combat like "If It Weren't For You" and "Uproar," to flirtation favorites like "The Stocking Game" and "Let's You and Him Fight," Dr. Berne exposes the secret ploys and unconscious maneuvers that rule our intimate lives. Explosive when it first appeared, Games People Play is now widely recognized as the most original and influential popular psychology book of our time. It's as powerful and eye-opening as ever.

©1964 Dr. Eric Berne (P)2011 Tantor

Critic Reviews

"An important book...a brilliant, amusing, and clear catalogue of the psychological theatricals that human beings play over and over again." (Kurt Vonnegut Jr., Life magazine)

What listeners say about Games People Play

Average Customer Ratings
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  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    3 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Great book but not suited for audio

Lots of figures and charts that do not come across well via audio. The book itself was great though and overall j enjoyed it.

19 people found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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good pick

This is a great audible i need more,
this is a great book easy to understand.

8 people found this helpful

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    2 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars

A lot of bouncing conversations

Need to be able to see it to under stand. Lots of bouncing back and forth found it hard to keep up and understand.
Maybe that's was just me.

5 people found this helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars

Quality content, dense material, can be boring.

Would you consider the audio edition of Games People Play to be better than the print version?

Yes, I find it's easier to process the content in audio form rather than print.

Would you ever listen to anything by Eric Berne again?

No.

Would you be willing to try another one of David Colacci’s performances?

No.

Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

No. It's rather long.

Any additional comments?

If you want a thorough but clinical breakdown of social interactions as strategic power games this book is for you. I found it boring and difficult to stay with. Haven't finished the book yet.

4 people found this helpful

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    3 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars

Good Idea, Bad Illustration

The idea that people play games that can be generally identified and analyzed is enlightening, and some of the archetypes given in the book are great. The problem is that the book is so heavily steeped in transactional analysis jargon that it's almost unintelligible. I'm unsure if that's because the visual elements of the book are missing, or if the author just expected everyone to have a previous study. Regardless, as a medical student with some undergraduate study in psychology, I recommend you spend your money elsewhere.

8 people found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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Whant to know what other people are thinking about

Would you consider the audio edition of Games People Play to be better than the print version?

Want to know what people are feeling and thinking about in a conversation this book will help you do that. This book breaks down conversations arguements debates and social interaction by analysising them as games people play. It is collegate reading material but if you listen closely you can see how you interact and find better ways to interact with people.

Who was your favorite character and why?

Not a Character book

Which scene was your favorite?

The breaking down of how a mother and child interact over a broken vase.

Any additional comments?

Physocoly 101 basic understanding of interactions between humans.

8 people found this helpful

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    3 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars

Good, but a bit academic

narrator was good, and the ideas presented were interesting. however at times I had to struggle to pay attention as it is a little dry and a bit academic for my taste.

4 people found this helpful

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    2 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars

Great concept, deeply socially dated

What would have made Games People Play better?

Modernization. Despite the disclaimer that the genders of the roles in the Games are "without prejudice," the content of this book is ridiculously sexist. An unexpected side effect is the compassion I now feel for the era my mother lived through.

Would you ever listen to anything by Eric Berne again?

I don't know. I'd check more carefully before I purchased, certainly.

Which character – as performed by David Colacci – was your favorite?

n/a

You didn’t love this book... but did it have any redeeming qualities?

The underlying concept of certain types of social encounters being "games" with payoffs, and the distinction of people operating from their Child, Parent, or Adult roles was tremendously useful.

Any additional comments?

It was definitely worth the listen, but I'm glad it was short, and I had to grit my teeth and overlook the extreme sexism to get the benefit of the underlying concept.

9 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

Berne is intelligent and arrogant.

While human interaction could be described as a game, I believe that it is highly inappropriate for psychiatry professionals to gaslight patients into believing that they are playing a "bad" game. because of the authors insistence that most human actions and interactions are games, it gives a general feel of humans being more evil then good.

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A Must Read for Everyone

I found the book very interesting. It helped me realize how as human beings we take advantage of each other. We all have some of all the characters in this book to some point. All I ask is, where is our compassion for one another? Where do you draw the line? Why is competition taught to us from the very beginning? To divide us because divided we fall! If we all were United the world our planet would be a place where we can travel and help one another. Instead of taking from one another, cheating our children from knowing about love vs. money. Life isn’t a gain! At the end we all are here and all will leave with nothing.