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Cards of Identity
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Cards of Identity

3.75 of 5 stars 3.75  ·  rating details  ·  48 ratings  ·  8 reviews
A Scathing Satire On Psychology, Identity Theory And Class Prejudice; Cards of Identity is a scathing satire of psychology, identity theory, and class prejudice. The plot centers on an annual meeting of the Identity Club, a group of psychologists who come together to present "case histories" promoting their chosen theory of identity. These case studies (three of which are ...more
Paperback, 301 pages
Published May 1st 2002 by Dalkey Archive Press (first published 1955)
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Greg
Quite a few people here on goodreads dot com don’t seem to like this book. I was a bit surprised by this since I found it to be pretty darn funny and a light and quick read but that had some interesting criticisms of the ‘current’ (1950’s, or today in certain branches of academia / intellectual thought) vogue of identity theory. Actually this is kind of a prophetic book, since identity theory wouldn’t really get underway for another few years after this book was written, sometime in the 1960’s. ...more
David
Definitely the most peculiar book I've read thus far in 2008. From the book's back cover:

"Cards of Identity is a scathing satire of psychology, identity theory, and class prejudice. The plot centers on an annual meeting of the Identity Club, a group of psychologists who come together to present "case histories" promoting their chosen theory of identity. These case studies (three of which are presented in the novel) are not scientific treatises, but fictional representations of characters in line
...more
Valancourt Books
I had high hopes for this one based on the cover blurb and its reputation as a minor classic. But in the end, I only made it through about 40% of the book. It gets off to a great start, with a trio of mysterious individuals arriving at a long-abandoned manor house and using psychological tricks, hypnosis, etc., to essentially brainwash the local people into being their servants in the great house. For me, though, after the promising and slightly sinister beginning, it went quickly downhill. Thou ...more
Mark
Despite the fascinating premise of this novel, I stopped reading after about 25 pages out of sheer boredom. The plot line disintegrated into painfully trivial and lengthy dialogues between characters who were just introduced a moment ago. I gave the book a chance to recover my interest, skipping ahead several times, but to no avail. This is unfortunate because the book yielded some interesting psychological insights in the initial pages (even if satire was the author's intention).
Guy Brookshire
My whole life I have been told that great storytelling is impossible without "real" characters that "undergo significant transformation." This book is a mushroom cloud over that principle.
John
Good fun, but ultimately too wordy and unsatisfying. The futility of some real lives is only slightly less fantastic than the roles assigned by the elite in this book.
Tuck
funny novel about who we are, or say we are. or what others think we are? i want a brainwashed town to do my bidding too.
Jesse
Cards of Identity by Nigel DENNIS
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