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Record Type: Review   ID: 105

The Right To Be Human: A Biography of Abraham Maslow

Hoffman, Edward

 This well-researched and insightful biography of Abraham Maslow, who introduced the terms "self-actualization" and "peak experience" into the language of human nature (a peak experience is a form of exceptional human experience), is well worth reading not only because of its intrinsic interest and the relevance of Maslow’s thinking (and being) to exceptional human experience, but because Maslow’s opus is a good example of a Project of Transcendence, Hoffman gives us the full record of the ups and downs involved in trying to actualize in life for one’s own self and also for humankind the cognitions (Maslow called them b-cognitions, because they usher forth from our very beings in what this Journal calls exceptional human experiences) that come to us spontaneously. Hoffman, himself a psychologist, interviewed hundreds of people who knew and worked with Maslow or who were his students and consulted Maslow’s private journals and unpublished writings. The 17 chapters concern the major phases of his life, tracing Maslow’s visions not only from their beginnings to the end of his life but their continuing influence. In a recent volume, Future Visions (Sage, 1996, to be reviewed), Hoffman presents Maslow’s unpublished papers.
Publisher Information:Los Angeles, CA: Jeremy P. Tarcher, 1988. 382p. Bibl: 349-357; Chap. notes: 358-368; Glossary: 337-342; 23 illus
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