Close But No Cigar

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Originally published in Contemporary Psychology: APA Review of Books, 1979, Vol 24(1), 50–52. Reviews the book, Too Close for Comfort: The Psychology of Crowding by Paul M. Insel and Henry Clay Lindgren (see record 1979-22485-000). This book seeks to review the available research on crowding and to determine whether “crowding has serious consequences and is a contributing factor to the deteriorating quality of life.” The authors state that crowding is pathological. The differences between crowding and population pressures are overlooked and the overwhelming complexity of world events is not considered. The literature review is uneven, and minimal data are used to support major claims The authors do not offer much evidence of serious pathology related to crowding, and when they do, it is sometimes in the form of an uncritical reference to somewhat inconclusive research. One area where crowding research is beginning to yield dramatic findings is in health, and the chapter on this topic is the best in the book. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2006 APA, all rights reserved)

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