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The Psychology of Dexter

3.82  ·  Rating Details ·  530 Ratings  ·  47 Reviews
Dexter Morgan: Police forensic analyst. Family man. Serial killer. And the star of Showtime's most-watched series, Dexter.
ebook, 265 pages
Published September 7th 2010 by Smart Pop
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Anthony Chavez
Ok, I lost this book for awhile, but I have found it and finished it.

A very interesting read, warning, you do need to have seen the first 4 seasons of Dexter at least to really understand some of the cases made by the various contributors to this book.

Some of the writing is pretty dry and hard to get through, but you have to tell yourself that these people aren't authors, this isn't a story, this is an evaluation.

The Psychology of Dexter is an edited book of essays, it delves into why we watch t
Nov 08, 2010 Gaijinmama rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: fans of Dexter
An intelligent look at one of the best shows out there...come on, what amazing level of talented writing and acting does it take to get us to actually root for a serial killer and hope he doesn't get caught!
That, by the way, is what's called cognitive dissonance, according to one of the essays in the book.

I get all gushy when I find intelligent discussion of the shows I like. This book is one of the best of an excellent series (Smart Pop..check them out on the web) and it has definitely enhanced
Apr 15, 2013 Robert rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I enjoyed this collection of articles by psychologists and psychiatrists (and a few psych students). Some read a bit like college essays and several of these people are obviously stuck on their own favorite psychological theory. (Is that some kind of syndrome? PSIS—Psychologist Self-Importance Syndrome) Others are more insightful and interesting. Overall, I'd recommend this book to Dexter fans.
Jan 21, 2013 Naja rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is a collection of essays by professional psychologists about the television show, "Dexter." For the most part, it's a fantastic read which incorporates a lot of current social topics, psychological trends and news items. My biggest qualm was that the psychologists don't seem to have communicated with each other very much before turning in their essays: a lot of the authors bring up the same topics or try to use the same "hooks" and "leaders" at the starts of their essays to lure you in. Th ...more
Oct 13, 2014 Jason rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
It is no quiet rumor that I loved Dexter; up until the last two seasons.

This book, primarily a reference guide, plummets the common viewer into the deeper realms of Dexter. Written by experts, this book is a nice complementary piece for a show that has gained a large following.

From an examination of personality traits, to the way a psychopath is 'created' this book has it all.

It has a very in depth look at how the individuals around him fed his behaviors, but also how people unintentionally expa
Sandy Anderson
Jan 24, 2011 Sandy Anderson rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Want to know how the show Dexter compares to Star Wars or Harry Potter? Want to know why we as an audience can be so fascinated by the journey of a serial killer and even regard him as a hero that we root for? These ideas and many more comprise these essays about the show's first four seasons - written by fans of Dexter who are also psychologists. The show's other characters, as well as Harry, are explored as well. I found it very interesting and thought-provoking. And as I rewatch the show with ...more
Oct 22, 2013 Danielle rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
It's pretty interesting to read this after the series has ended. It's alright but not much more than any psych student could have easily diagnosed themselves. Some of the papers try a little too hard and leave out details that do not support their ideas, but that's pretty normal I suppose!
Feb 13, 2012 Tara rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
meh. What could be more fictional than psychologists talking about a made up psychopath?
Read the first several chapters years ago & skimmed through the rest. Meh
Review originally published here:

This book is a collection of essays written by psychologists about the television show “Dexter”, about a serial killer who works is a blood spatter analyst for the Miami Metro police department. “Dexter” is one of my all-time favorite shows, mainly because the main character is so complex. Dexter is a serial killer, but he’s also a colleague, a family man, a devoted brother, a good son. But there’s this dark side to him, t
Eustacia Tan
Jul 17, 2013 Eustacia Tan rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Even if you're like me, you've probably heard of the tv show Dexter. Actually, I think my dad watches Dexter occasionally. As for me, I'm making my way through the books. So while I'm jumping the gun, I requested to read this anthology.

Because Dexter is so obviously full of psychologically complex characters (Dexter does claim to be a sociopath after all), there is so much to dig into. This book has eighteen different topics, covering things from The Dark Passenger In All Of Us to Why Psychopat
John Freeman
Jan 26, 2014 John Freeman rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Even though Dexter isn't real the writing and acting is so sophisticated psychologically that mental health professionals are able to discuss both him and the people closest to him as if they were all real.

There are several different articles each by a different professional. Some didn't engage my interest but many did. The second one was the best, I thought, and the one from which I learned the most about Dexter but many others offered real insight.

Dexter's stepfather, Harry Morgan, was taken o
diรтυяbєd wяiтєя [lєvi] яiρяσbรтєwαят {semi-hiatus}
I was expecting something a little better I supposed, considering these essays were about the show and not the books. The first couple essays are okay but it might be the kind of book you shouldn't read straight through; I don't even remember season 2 or 4 in their entirety and I remember nothing of season 3 but after the first 3 or so essays, I felt like I was reading things I already knew. A lot of the "conclusions" the authors make were things I kind of felt like "yeah, I know. So what?" And ...more
Meagan Thompson
Jan 31, 2013 Meagan Thompson rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Wonderful book. I enjoyed reading the insights of some incredibly intelligent individuals about my favorite character on TV. This book truly gave me a new point of view of some things concerning the show that I had not given much thought to. I really hope they continue with this book for more current seasons. There are SO many more aspects of these characters that I would love to see investigated further. This is an absolute must read for any Dexter fan and for anyone with even the slightest int ...more
Mark Henderson
Apr 22, 2013 Mark Henderson rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: psychology
One of my guilty pleasures has been watching Dexter, and likewise, reading The Psychology of Dexter has been a guilty pleasure. The is my first read from Smart Pop Books publishing, yet I will definitely check out other titles.

This collection of essays analyzes the psychological currents and motivations that are prevalent throughout each episode (at least seasons 1 through 4). Each psychologist (or graduate student) analyzes Dexter and other series characters in easy to understand prose. The aut
This is a collection of essays written at the end of the fourth season and there are spoilers if you haven't seen the entire season. Some of the essays looked exclusively at Dexter and some included other characters such as Rita and Deb. While there was much agreement, almost repetition in some essays, I found the differing interpretations of Dexter's own psychology, particularly his evolution, the most thought provoking. At least one examined the psychology of the viewer and this made me look c ...more
Jordyn Redwood
Dec 30, 2013 Jordyn Redwood rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The Psychology of Dexter is a series of essays written by mental health types who look at some of the mental health aspects of the show. I enjoyed several of them but lost interest in the book after about 75%-- it just seemed to get repetitive.

I'll be doing a blog series on this book. I'll post the links here after they go live.

My favorite essays were:

Rethinking Dexter by Lisa Firestone, PhD.

Naughty by Nature by Joshua L. Gowin

The Psychology of Dexter's Kills by Marisa Mauro, PsyD.

Deception by B
Part of the "The Psychology of [pop culture item here]" series, this book is a collection of essays about the show Dexter. The authors present a myriad of different opinions and ideas - one essay argues that Dexter is worse than Paul when it comes to abusiveness, while another essay argues that Dexter (and other psychopaths) aren't nearly as bad as we think. It's an interesting read, and it made me think about the show in new ways.

A note of warning: this book contains spoilers through the end of
If you haven't watched the entire series by the time you read this book, you'll ruin things for yourself. There should be spoiler warnings on it.

I liked the psychological insight into one of my favorite antiheroes. I thought it interesting that no one psychologist seemed to agree on the source of Dexter's self-imposed status as Dark Avenger. Commentary on te field of psychology I suppose.

Ohhh..also in the series, "The Psychology of Joss Whedon". Too bad I can't find it in any library in the sta
Michelle H
On the one hand, this book is incredibly nerdy (who reads psychological essays about their favorite show besides me?) and on the other, it is completely engrossing and thought-provoking; I mostly loved The Psychology of Dexter. A couple of the essays were very dry or not very stimulating, but most were very clever and enjoyable. Overall, if you are a fan of the show and wonder just HOW you can be rooting so heartily for a serial killer or just need your Dexter fix between seasons, try this.
Apr 01, 2015 Kelsie rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This book was very entertaining. I love the show Dexter, and I studied psychology in school, so it was a perfect fit for me. While I certainly did not agree with all of the arguments, it was interesting to see how each author made his or her conclusions. It would have been better if it had been updated after the show ended, as it only covers the first four seasons. It could be kind of repetitive, but overall, very interesting!
Jun 20, 2015 Mickey rated it it was amazing
I was pleasantly surprised by this book. It is well written and entertaining. I learned a lot about the application of psychological terms to real life situations (or TV show portrayals). I must find some other similar books. Some articles that I particularly enjoyed: Jared A Defife's "Predator on the Prowl", Marisa Mauro's "The Psychology of Dexter's Kills" and "It's All About Harry", Jeremy Clyman's "The Angels on His Shoulder", and Adi Jaffe's "The Killer Within".
Carolanne McCarthy
As a die hard fan of the show, I could not wait to get my hands on this book and it did not at all disappoint. It digs below the surface of Dexter and looks in between the lines of what is shown on the screen. It is a well written, intelligent dissection. Put together by a collection of psychologists, it is extremely detailed, intricate and insightful. I would definitely recommend it to anyone who finds themselves craving a deeper look into the series.
I really enjoyed this - I found several of the essays quite thought-provoking, and appreciated that the whole thing was written for the layperson. None of it was too advanced for an amateur psychologist's understanding, and many of the theories - though conflicting with each other - had merit. I only wish I could know what the authors of these essays would say with seasons 5 and 6 behind them...
Kristin De flores
As a psychology major it was insightful of how childhood tragedies can affect a person. Even though this is a TV character, it was interesting to get a psychological perspective on Dexter. I also had never seen the show, but was more intrigued when I read the book along with the show. If you can't handle blood, this is not the book for you.

Very interesting read.
Kurami Rocket
Mar 27, 2016 Kurami Rocket rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This was a very fascinating and informative read. Definitely recommend this to all and any Dexter fans and anyone who is interested in/loves psychology.

While reading this, I found myself learning about many different things and topics. And will definitely be checking out the books and authors mentioned in this book.
Jun 02, 2013 James rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Very enjoyable read - the book only references Seasons 1-4, so *spoiler alerts* to anyone who hasn't seen all four of those seasons. The essays were so good, I'll probably look up the individual authors who contributed and hunt down my favorites to see what else they've written...although this is marketed as a "popular psychology" book, nothing was really "dumbed down" - highly recommend!
Jul 10, 2013 Adele rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
It was an interesting read, however at times it dragged on a bit. It would have been good if the book went into more detail about Dexter's psychology rather than going off on tangents such as making a comparison between Dexter and war criminals, or about discussing why fans like 'Dexter'.
Gevera Bert
Jan 30, 2012 Gevera Bert rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I'm a little disappointed that the book focuses almost exclusively on the television show. I don't care about the spoilers (I've read all the books but only seen Season 1), but it seems unfair to the author/creator to ignore his contribution.
Gayla Nelson
Jan 04, 2013 Gayla Nelson rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
I had high hopes for this book and a few of the essays in it were quite good, but it became very repetitive. Most of the psychologists who wrote about Dexter said pretty much the same thing. I was frankly disappointed in it.
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Bella DePaulo (Ph.D., Harvard, 1979) is a social psychologist and the author of Singled Out: How Singles are Stereotyped, Stigmatized, and Ignored, and Still Live Happily Ever After and Single with Attitude: Not Your Typical Take on Health and Happiness, Love and Money, Marriage and Friendship. In Singled Out, and in her other work on people who are single, DePaulo has drawn from social science da ...more
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