Tuesday, November 29, 2011

“Zero to Hero” from the Hercules soundtrack. This is my favorite song from my favorite movie, ever. I watch this movie when I’m sad, happy, bored, basically whatever emotional state I’m in, and I can recite almost all of the lines from the movie from start to finish.

“Piano Man” by Billy Joel. This is my study song and one of two songs that I can actually concentrate on my homework when it is playing.

“I’m Yours” by Jason Mraz. This is my other study song. I love it because it is calming, and I basically tune out the words and focus on the background music when I’m studying.

“Party on 5th Ave.” by Mac Miller. This is a recent favorite of mine that I listen to while I’m getting ready to go out on the weekends. Essentially, it reminds me of Madison.

“Butterfly Kisses” by Bob Carlisle. My dad and I would always sing this song together during long car rides. When I was eight, we decided this would be the song we danced to at my wedding.

“Knock Knock” by Mac Miller. My two brothers and I would always turn this song on while we were in the car together. We even made up an incredibly cheesy but hilarious dance to it.

“Look at Me Now” by Chris Brown. My goal in life is to memorize this song, especially the fast parts.

“Wavin’ Flag” by K’Naan. This song was the first warm up song for my high school soccer team and summer soccer team.

“Chicks Dig It” by Chris Cagle. This song has no sentimental value to me other than that it’s my favorite song.

"Circle of Life" from The Lion King soundtrack. I love disney movies and would watch this with my cousins (and by myself) a lot. It is also my ringtone and I love the weird looks I get from strangers when they hear it.

Sunday, November 20, 2011

Research paper

Werner-Wilson, R.J. (1998). Gender differences in adolescent sexual attitudes: The influence of individual and family factors. Adolescence, 33. Retrieved from http://www.questia.com/googleScholar.qst?docId=5001502839

“Factors within the individual that are associated with sexual behavior include psychosocial characteristics (e.g., age at first intercourse, self-esteem), gender, and attitudes about sexuality. Adolescents are also influenced by their peers and family.”

This article is about how attitudes toward sex in adolescents depends on factors pertaining to the individual and family factors. This would be solid evidence for my paper because it involves a study done with high school students and their parents. This study was done in 1998, so it is most likely outdated and I should look for more recent studies. I could use this in my paper to compare influences on teenage attitudes toward sex now and from about 15 years ago.

Collins, R. L. et al (2004). Watching sex on television predicts adolescent initiation of sexual behavior. Pediatrics, 114, 280-289. doi: 10.1542/peds.2003-1065-L

Multivariate regression analysis indicated that adolescents who viewed more sexual content at baseline were more likely to initiate intercourse and progress to more advanced noncoital sexual activities during the subsequent year, controlling for respondent characteristics that might otherwise explain these relationships.”

This article explained a study done to try to calculate if watching TV for a certain amount of time each day would influence sexual behavior in teenagers, as well as what they did, how often, and at what age. Results found that adolescents who watched more TV that contained sexual behavior were more likely to participate in similar behavior during the following year. This study is more recent and it pertains to a different influence on sexual behavior, the media. Again, studies are beneficial in proving a point, but I will definitely need books or articles that don’t involve studies for more variety.

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Ch 10 & 11

             In Chapter 11 of The Psychopath Test, “The Avoidable Death of Rebecca Riley,” Jon Ronson discusses the idea that many of the mental disorders in the DSM are probably inaccurate and not actual disorders. However, because the American society likes conformity, people are comfortable labeling themselves with disorders in order to explain their odd human behavior. The chapter begins with Ron attending a Scientology banquet and hearing a speech from Lady Margaret McNair about how most mental disorders (and psychiatry) are absurd. Ronson says that the large number of mental disorders can be attributed to Robert Spritzer, a past editor of the DSM-III. He then mentions an experiment done by David Rosenhan to show that psychiatry was ridiculous. Rosenhan and 7 friends pretended to hear voices in their heads, but otherwise acted normally. Until they pretended to be mentally ill and “get better,” the hospitals that they were in refused to let them leave. When Rosenhan spoke up about his experiment, one hospital claimed that they would be able to spot fakes in the future. They then said that 41 people had been sent by Rosenhan even though he had not sent any. Spritzer, after hearing of this, decided to eliminate the errors that human judgment brings to psychiatry by composing checklists for every possible mental disorder in the DSM-III. He was largely successful, and many American’s began diagnosing themselves with the new DSM. Allen Frances eventually replaces Spritzer and said that it was their fault for misdiagnosing people with Autism, Attention Deficit Disorder, and Childhood Bipolar Disorder. Ron then speaks of Bryna Hebert, who believes that her children are bipolar. Ronson also speaks with David Shaffer who believes that children diagnosed with Childhood Bipolar Disorder actually have ADD. The chapter ends with the story of Rebecca Riley, a child diagnosed as bipolar who dies when given an overdose of her medication.

            After reading that a lot of mental illnesses are probably misdiagnosed, Childhood Bipolar Disorder in particular, I started to question the validity of psychiatry. I don’t know enough about the subject to disagree with the profession of psychiatry completely, but when hearing about Rebecca Riley’s death because of her overdose, I can’t help but think that she died because of the carelessness of doctors and from people being over-eager to categorize those who are different. My biggest question is about the mysterious book. What did it mean!?

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Ronson- Ch 8 & 9

          Chapter 8, “The Madness of David Shayler,” describes how society selects the “right” kind of madness for entertainment, such as in the case of David Shayler, to inform people what not to be like. Ronson begins by telling the story of Rachel North and the explosion on the Piccadilly line tube on July 7, 2005. 26 people died in Rachel’s carriage alone, and there were four bombs in all. Rachel found that writing about her experience in a blog helped her heal, in a way, and other survivors of the accident found her blog online and contacted her. However, conspiracy theorists claimed that Rachel North did not actually exist and that the government invented her to make the British people believe that a terrorist attack had happened instead of an accidental power surge. Once of these conspiracy theorists was David Shayler, an MI5 spy, who became famous for being on the run after he told Mail on Sunday secret information about an attempted assassination. Initially, Shayler was somewhat of a hero to the people of Britain, but he eventually became infamous for his conspiracy theorist views on the 7/7 bombing, 9/11, and believing that he was the Messiah. Shayler went from being somewhat interesting because of his views to completely crazy in the eyes of the people. Ronson interviewed him multiple times and found on his last visit that Shayler was still quite mad. The chapter ends with Ronson mentioning that there are different types of “madness,” and London society chooses the type of madness that they deem interesting and acceptable in society and rejects those who seem too extreme in their madness.

            I didn’t really see how this chapter related to psychopathy like the other chapters. It involved madness, but I didn’t know if Ronson was implying that Shayler was a psychopath or if he was just adding madness to the mix of psychological disorders that plague his anxiety. Chapter 9 was also a bit confusing because of Briton’s profiling history, but the parts where Hare and Ronson discuss the Psychopath Checklist in relation to falsely accusing someone as a psychopath or murderer eventually made more sense by the end of the chaper.

Monday, October 31, 2011

"Something Borrowed"

Malcolm Gladwell’s “Something Borrowed” is an article that discusses the extent to which plagiarism amounts as theft and copying someone’s already written words or life story versus creating a work of art out of someone else’s idea, sometimes by accident. Gladwell begins by explaining the situation of Dorothy Lewis, a psychiatrist who studies serial killers. She was upset and filed a lawsuit against Byrony Lavery, a playwright, for plagiarizing her book and inaccurately plagiarizing some of her life story in Lavery’s play “Frozen.” However, Lavery explains to Gladwell that much of what she had written in her play had come from Gladwell’s profile about Lewis in a newspaper, so Lavery did not think that she was plagiarizing. She had credited much of her play to the story of Marian Partington and her murdered sister. Because she included Partington’s personal story, she believed that it had to be acknowledged, but in relation to Gladwell’s work, she thought it was legal to take without accreditation because it was “news.” Gladwell then references how musical artists had taken chords of previous songs and added them to their own new song, and it was usually never considered plagiarism because it was thought to be “art,” and there was no way to prove that one artist owns the origin of those chords. Also, Gladwell explains that it is too difficult to claim plagiarism in music, but when it comes to written words, people become more upset when their words that they wrote are being taken.

This article had an affect on me as a college student because as I am about to write a research paper, I need to be especially careful when writing about something that has already been published. It’s hard to determine between your idea and an idea that you think is yours after you already read it somewhere and you subconsciously stole it. This reminded me of how Mark Zuckerberg had to deal with a lawsuit about his stealing the idea of Facebook, and I was reminded of a quote I saw in the movie Social Network. “If you guys were the inventors of Facebook, you'd have invented Facebook.”

Monday, October 17, 2011

Chapters 6 & 7

            Chapter six of The Psychopath Test illustrates the influence of Al Dunlap, CEO of Sunbeam (among many other companies), on the once thriving town of Shubuta, Mississippi and depicts Ronson’s interview with Dunlap as he attempts to label Dunlap as a possible psychopath. Al Dunlap is known as a rich and powerful man who enjoys firing people from companies. He once fired a man who had worked at Scott for 30 years and asked the man why he would want to work somewhere that long. Ronson characterizes him as a psychopath because of his lack of empathy, as well as numerous other characteristics he possesses that parallel Bob Hare’s Psychopath Test checklist. For example, Dunlap’s mansion is full of statues and paintings of predators, showing that he is conning/manipulative. However, Dunlap thinks that all his negative qualities that should label him quite clearly as a psychopath are actually qualities of a leader. Ronson ends the chapter wondering if Dunlap really is a psychopath or if the people who supported him, such as the buyers of stocks, were the true villains.

            Chapter six was interesting because Ronson introduces people of power and wealth as psychopaths. This wasn’t particularly surprising to me because there are a lot of wealthy jerks out there, and since not all psychopaths are necessarily dangerous, Al Dunlap seems to fit the category perfectly. Although, I was somewhat confused as to whether or not Ronson believed him to be a true psychopath by the end of the chapter. Chapter seven fascinated me even more because of Charlotte Scott’s way of treating guests on TV shows as entertainment rather than people. It left me thinking that she was made into a psychopath through her work because of her eventual lack of empathy for the guests, but I’m pretty sure that that isn’t possible….