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Capitalism and Mental Illness: An Investigation of How Our Culture Makes Us Sick

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The purpose of this thesis is to examine the relationship between mental illness and capitalist consumer society. Many Americans are suffering from mental illness and there has to be something causing it besides a chemical imbalance in the brain. A

The purpose of this thesis is to examine the relationship between mental illness and capitalist consumer society. Many Americans are suffering from mental illness and there has to be something causing it besides a chemical imbalance in the brain. A capitalist society creates a set of expectations that conflict with human desires. The thesis takes a historical, economical, and psychological approach to answering the following question: Does a capitalist society make its citizens mentally sick? A brief history of capitalism over the past century is discussed, as well as a more in depth look at capitalism and the creation of neoliberalism during the 1980s. The psychological effects capitalism has on human beings is discussed for the majority of the thesis and focuses on ideas from the 1950s as well as the early 2000s. To show the effect capitalism has on modern day society, an analysis of a psychopharmaceutical drug commercial is given. The concluding thoughts attempt to offer solutions to the problems of human unhappiness in a consumer culture.

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2014-05

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Striving for a Voice in the Public Sphere: Political Ambition, Public Speaking, and Women

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This interdisciplinary thesis examines the possible relationship between the public speaking experience for women and the gender gap in political ambition. First, a historical analysis of women public speakers ranging from the 1800s to the Suffragettes to female politicians in

This interdisciplinary thesis examines the possible relationship between the public speaking experience for women and the gender gap in political ambition. First, a historical analysis of women public speakers ranging from the 1800s to the Suffragettes to female politicians in the 1900s reveals a pattern of female public speakers in politics receiving extreme criticism for their communicative behavior. The thesis then turns to the socialization of young girls, highlighting how gameplay in children translates into gendered communicative behavior in adult women. Next, an examination of the pedagogy of public speaking showcases how the public speaking experience is different for women than it is for men, and how public speaking traditionally is taught in a masculine style. Then, through a review of the literature on the gender gap in political ambition, it is seen that not only are women severely underrepresented in political office in the United States, but women have far less political ambition than men. And a case study of the 2008 presidential primaries and elections, highlighting modern women in politics, demonstrates that the few women who are politically ambitious in the 21st century face criticism that mirrors those faced by political women decades and centuries prior. Finally, the thesis offers possible solutions to changing the experience of women as public speakers and fostering political ambition in women.

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2015-05

A Psychological Analysis of the Modern Superhero and Its Influence on Adolescent Popular Culture

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For the sake of this thesis, two scholarly collections edited by Dr. Robin S. Rosenberg – Our Superheroes, Ourselves (2013) and The Psychology of Superheroes: An Unauthorized Exploration (2008) – were reviewed. From these two collections and the multitude of

For the sake of this thesis, two scholarly collections edited by Dr. Robin S. Rosenberg – Our Superheroes, Ourselves (2013) and The Psychology of Superheroes: An Unauthorized Exploration (2008) – were reviewed. From these two collections and the multitude of psychological theories they cite, those most relevant to adolescent character development are considered. Three broad theories are examined first: positive psychology, equity theory, and attachment style. Then, six additional specific theories that define temperament (behavioral activation system and behavioral inhibition system), personality theory, duel identity, media identification, parasocial interaction, and comparison theory are reviewed. After reviewing each theory, Heroes in Crisis (2019) , a recent bestselling DC offering that addresses superhero trauma, is analyzed through the lens of these psychological theories in order to provide insight into the psychology or both superheroes and their adolescent fans.

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2020-05