Carlton Rogers psychology is a subject that has been studied and written about for years. There is no doubt that Rogers was an incredibly innovative psychologist. He made breakthroughs in understanding behavior, but at the same time, he also made controversial claims. Rogers was fired from his job at the American Psychological Association because of complaints he had made regarding racial profiling in police stops.
This controversy led Rogers to challenge the whole society's understanding of psychology. He felt that psychology should not be limited to what the psychiatric field would label as abnormal. He wanted it to include all psychological disturbances. He did however allow for white supremacy and he deplored the white power structure that he felt kept black Americans in their place. However he remained optimistic and believed that psychology could one day help society achieve equality.
It was on this same note that Rogers ended his research into the pathology of white supremacy. He wrote a book entitled The Oppression of the Mind, which he hoped would prove that all mental disorders were caused by one central force. It did and it remains one of the most widely read books in history. One of the things that stand out in this book is Rogers' insistence that no one can be too rich or educated to be affected by mental illness. He also pointed out that one of the major causes of poor health and disease in America today is the impact of industrialization and corporate power.
One of the most interesting and relevant points in The Oppression of the Mind is Rogers' belief that all of us are deeply influenced by our personal experiences in our childhood. I have often wondered what children of gay parents go through. Have they always been dealt with prejudices and anti-social behavior? If so, why do some of them still come up psychologically damaged and sick? Rogers suggests that all of these questions can be answered through psychology.
Another interesting aspect of The Oppression of the Mind deals with how our emotional responses to people affect our ability to reason logically. Rogers points out that when we are emotionally threatened, our logical mind shuts down. This forces people to engage in irrational behaviors. In one case, a man killed his wife because she wouldn't leave him, and when the reasoning process was attempted again at length, it led this person to believe he had the right to kill her.
Overall, this is an excellent introduction to psychology and one that is jam packed with very valuable insights. If you are familiar with this type of psychology, especially Rogers' work, you will find this book fairly easy to read and understand. However, if you aren't familiar with this kind of psychology, or psychology in general, this book may be somewhat boring for you. But then again, it's only a book and is easily summed up. That being said, for anyone interested in psychology or with a psychology degree, this book should be required reading. It has so much to offer.