Born to Rebel: Birth Order, Family Dynamics, and Creative Lives

Title Born to Rebel: Birth Order, Family Dynamics, and Creative Lives
ISBN 0679442324
Author Sulloway, Frank J.
Binding Hardcover
Publisher Pantheon
Publisher Year 1996
Publisher Location New York
Condition Fine
Description 0679442324 This groundbreaking book takes on the influence of birth order in personalities and offers some surprising conclusions. Frank J. Sulloway, a researcher at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, has undertaken the first comprehensive study of birth order in determining personality and social outlook. He produces overwhelming evidence that, because of the evolutionary hierarchy in families, first-born children are more likely to be conformists while the later-borns tend to be more creative and more likely to reject the status quo. He documents just how different siblings are from each another--a person tends to have more in common with any randomly chosen person of their own age than with a sibling--and explains why sibling differences occur. The book offers new insights into the determining factors of who we are and who our children will be, and it is unlike any research yet published. From Publishers Weekly The thesis advanced by M.I.T. research scholar Sulloway (Freud: Biologist of the Mind) in this provocative, sure-to-be-controversial study is that firstborn children identify more strongly with power and authority and are more conforming, conventional and defensive, whereas younger siblings are more adventurous, rebellious and inclined to question the status quo. He bases this conclusion on birth-order research and on his theory that siblings jockey for niches within the family in Darwinian fashion: while firstborns defend their special status, later-borns are more open to experience because accessibility helps them maximize attention and love from their parents. Providing a detailed statistical analysis of thousands of individuals' responses to 28 scientific innovations?Darwinism, the Copernican revolution, Einstein's relativity, etc.?Sulloway concludes that most have been initiated and championed by later-borns, whereas firstborns tend to reject new ideas. He overstates his case when he interprets the French Revolution's Reign of Terror as fundamentally a battle between firstborn conservatives and later-born liberals, and his analysis of the Protestant Reformation in similar terms is debatable. And although Darwin, Voltaire, Ralph Nader and abolitionist Harriet Tubman were later-born siblings, Einstein, Freud, Galileo, Newton, Kepler, Lavoisier and many other radical innovators were firstborns, casting doubt on birth-order influence. Photos. First serial to the New Yorker. Copyright 1996 Reed Business Information, Inc.


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