Illusions of Control

Fathali M. Moghaddam

Illusions of control are explored in a wide variety of domains—from the micro level of the self and interpersonal relations to the macro level of large organizations and intergroup and international relations. The authors argue that people are motivated to control the world, and in particular, to control future events. This tendency is strong in Western industrialized societies, where modern science is seen as a means through which humans can gain mastery over environmental conditions. The tendency to control can have positive and negative consequences. Illusions of control are often shattered by unexpected events such as divorce, death, and by technological and environmental changes. The authors argue that the best strategy for coping is to develop long-term goals and short-term strategies. Working from a multidisciplinary perpective, they show how to avoid the pitfalls of these illusions of control. This book will be of interest to students and professionals in social psychology, and organizational behavior management.

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