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Infested Mind: Why Humans Fear, Loathe, and Love Insects

3.52  ·  Rating details ·  42 ratings  ·  11 reviews
The human reaction to insects is neither purely biological nor simply cultural. And no one reacts to insects with indifference. Insects frighten, disgust and fascinate us. Jeff Lockwood explores this phenomenon through evolutionary science, human history, and contemporary psychology, as well as a debilitating bout with entomophobia in his work as an entomologist. Exploring ...more
Hardcover, 203 pages
Published October 1st 2013 by Oxford University Press, USA (first published January 1st 2013)
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3.52  · 
Rating details
 ·  42 ratings  ·  11 reviews

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Apr 15, 2014 rated it it was ok
Shelves: medical
Having absolutely loved Jeffrey A. Lockwood's book "Locust; the devastating rise and mysterious disappearance of the insect that shaped the American Frontier", when I saw this at the library I was excited. Unfortunately for those who know Lockwood because of his association with insects, this book is a disappointment as it is less about insects and more about the human mind.
Oct 27, 2018 rated it liked it
Shelves: white
What do you do if you're an entomologist, whose profession is the study of insects, and an encounter with a seething horde of locusts leaves you with a bit of a case of entomophobia? Well, one thing you can do is get a book out of it.

The result is a nice mix of psychology and entomology. How does disgust work? How does it interact with fear? How much of this is a result of evolutionary drives? We also hear a fair amount about the life cycles of a variety of different insects, from locusts to bed
Chris Friesen
Sep 24, 2017 rated it it was ok
An interesting read, but was a bit heavy on psychology (especially phobias) and too light on cultural ideas about insects.
Jessica Draper
Mar 16, 2016 rated it really liked it
Delusory parasitosis--a great name for a post-modern punk band, and a fascinating mental glitch
Jeremy Lockwood is an entomologist who developed a phobia of insects after being swarmed by grasshoppers. Happily, he turned his apostasy from insectophilia into a post as a literature professor and a fascinating, informative, sometimes itch-inducing exploration of humans’ emotional relationship to multi-legged creepy-crawlies. He reviews the possible reasons for humans’ fears of and antipathy toward i
Nov 13, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I read this book for my research report and it is very helpful. This book successfully correlates the impacts of insect on human psychology. It also has the detailed study of entomophobic patients, regarding the cause of their fear and the treatments. The book also goes as far as observing the dreams about insect. Very helpful for academic reading as it contains a very detailed references of the information and researches.
I love well-written books by experts that can appeal equally well to fellow scientists and laypeople. This is one of those books. Lockwood, in addition to being an entomologist specializing in grasshoppers, is also a professor in his institution's MFA program. It shows. His writing is clear and subtly funny.

Lockwood actually went through a period where he developed a phobia of the very creatures he studies. He uses this is a touch-point for discussing the psychology and evolution of human/insect
C.J. Ruby
Apr 18, 2014 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: animals, brain, science
Sonja Deneve
May 05, 2015 rated it really liked it
Very good appraisal of how people get conditioned in their attitude and behavior towards insects.
May 24, 2014 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
To be honest, wanted some more disgusting insect facts rather than a study of phobias.
Science For The People
Featured on Science for the People show #264 on May 9, 2014, during an interview with author Jeffrey Lockwood.
Christine Whittington
Aug 19, 2018 is currently reading it
Jeffrey Lockwood is an entomologist who was studying grasshopper swarms when he *was* engulfed by a swarm of "Biblical proportions" in Wyoming and had a horrible panic attack. Just the description of it makes my skin crawl. From this, he developed a grasshopper phobia. Not a good thing for his profession. He is not alone. Salvador Dali had a grasshopper phobia--and so do I. The book is in part about human horror of insects (horror=fear + revulsion) and also about Lockwood's journey through the p ...more
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Jeffrey Lockwood is an unusual fellow. He grew up in New Mexico and spent youthful afternoons enchanted by feeding grasshoppers to black widows in his backyard. This might account for both his scientific and literary affinities.

He earned a doctorate in entomology from Louisiana State University and worked for 15 years as an insect ecologist at the University of Wyoming. He became a world-renowned