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Publisher's Summary

One of the most influential living psychologists looks at the history of his life and discipline, and paints a much brighter future for everyone. When Martin E. P. Seligman first encountered psychology in the 1960s, the field was devoted to eliminating misery: it was the science of how past trauma creates present symptoms. Today, thanks in large part to Seligman's Positive Psychology movement, it is ever more focused not on what cripples life, but on what makes life worth living - with profound consequences for our mental health. 

In this wise and eloquent memoir, spanning the most transformative years in the history of modern psychology, Seligman recounts how he learned to study optimism - including a life-changing conversation with his 5-year-old daughter. He tells the human stories behind some of his major findings, like CAVE, an analytical tool that predicts election outcomes (with shocking accuracy) based on the language used in campaign speeches, the international spread of Positive Education, the launch of the US Army's huge resilience program, and the canonical studies that birthed the theory of learned helplessness - which he now reveals was incorrect. And he writes at length for the first time about his own battles with depression at a young age. 

In The Hope Circuit, Seligman makes a compelling and deeply personal case for the importance of virtues like hope, gratitude, and wisdom for our mental health. You will walk away from this book not just educated but deeply enriched. 

PLEASE NOTE: When you purchase this title, the accompanying reference material will be available in your Library section along with the audio.

©2018 Martin E. P. Seligman (P)2018 Hachette Audio

Critic Reviews

"For half a century Martin Seligman has enlightened and inspired students of the human mind with his arresting findings and his visionary insights. He has been unafraid to plumb the dark recesses of the psyche, but just as bold in illuminating our better angels. This book combines a history of psychology by a man who shaped it, an explanation of powerful ideas about mental life, and a delightfully candid and reflective memoir." (Steven Pinker, Johnstone Professor of Psychology, Harvard University, and the author of How the Mind Works and Enlightenment Now)

"With a mix of humility and insight, Marty Seligman walks us through the full arc of his life, offering his theories on tectonic shifts in both himself and the field of psychology. In The Hope Circuit, Marty uncovers a view of human nature that is as surprising as it is inspiring. Dive in for a fascinating disciplinary history seen through the eyes of one of the most influential psychologists of our time." (Barbara Fredrickson, author of Positivity and Love 2.0)

"Martin Seligman has written a fascinating and intimate portrait of both his own life and the discipline of psychology. A deeply gifted scholar, practitioner and communicator, he reminds us that positive psychology has profound implications for the way we live and work-and for public policy. Through his unique insights, relentless work ethic and infectious enthusiasm, Marty has helped many children and adults around the world - and especially in Australia - live more engaged, happy and meaningful lives. For that we should be most grateful." (The Honorable Kevin Rudd, 26th Prime Minister of Australia)

What listeners say about The Hope Circuit

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Me, myself & I!

It is clear that Seligman has made many important contributions that began moving psychology from its pathology focus to resilience, post traumatic growth, and positive psychology! He and his collaborators have begun a monumental transformation of the field. However I felt like he wants the reader to recognize that he is the figurehead of 'positive psychology" and he and PS are synonymous. I found myself wishing for more humility and less tooting of his own horn.

The myriad threads that propelled the field to embrace this transformation tell fascinating story.

6 people found this helpful

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    2 out of 5 stars

Misleading title. It's a memoir

I gave up close to half through. Nothing in the title or description gave me an impression that it was a comprehensive "life and times" of the author.

I mean no disrespect to the author. If he is already a hero of yours, you will probably enjoy it.

If you are looking for something psycholigically insightful, there isn't much meat on the bone.

5 people found this helpful

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Amazing

If you are interested in the history of psychology and the incredible contributions of Dr. Seligman (i.e., Marty), this is your book. As a practicing psychologist and a fellow alumni of the Albany Academy (Dr. Seligman's high school), I found myself completely captured by this autobiography. Dr. Seligman walks you through both his remarkable professional and personal lives, including (but certainly not limited to) learned helplessness, positive psychology, and the hope circuit. This book is a fascinating journey, that has left me encouraged and wishing I could go back to school to get my MAPP!

3 people found this helpful

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A well-detailed narrative.

A well-detailed narrative of Seligman's life/accomplishments within the silhouette of the field of Psychology.