Look at Me!: The Fame Motive from Childhood to Death
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Four million adults in the United States say that becoming famous is the most important goal in their lives. In any random sampling of one hundred American adults, two will have fame as their consuming desire. What motivates those who set fame as their priority, where did the desire come from, how does the pursuit of fame influence their lives, and how is it expressed? Based on the research of Orville Gilbert Brim, award-winning scholar in the field of child and human development, Look at Me! answers those questions. Look at Me! examines the desire to be famous in people of all ages, backgrounds, and social status and how succeeding or failing affects their lives and their personalities. It explores the implications of the pursuit of fame throughout a person's lifetime, covering the nature of the desire; fame, money, and power; the sources of fame; how people find a path to fame; the kinds of recognition sought; creating an audience; making fame last; and the resulting, often damaged, life of the fame-seeker. In our current age of celebrity fixation and reality television, Brim gives us a social-psychological perspective on the origins of this pervasive desire for fame and its effects on our lives. "Look at Me! is a fascinating in-depth study of society's obsession with fame. If you ever wondered what it's like to be famous, why fame comes to some and is sought by others, it's all here . . ." ---Jeffrey L. Bewkes, Chairman and CEO, Time Warner "In a voice filled with wisdom and insight, daring and self-reflection, Orville Brim masterfully traces the developmental origins and trajectory of fame. Look at Me! lets us see---with new eyes---the cultural priorities and obsessions that feed our individual hunger and appetites. A rare and rewarding book." ---Sara Lawrence-Lightfoot, Emily Hargroves Fisher Professor of Education at Harvard University and author of Respect and The Third Chapter Orville Gilbert Brim has had a long and distinguished career. He is the former director of the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation Research Network on Successful Midlife Development, former president of the Foundation for Child Development, former president of the Russell Sage Foundation, and author and coauthor of more than a dozen books about human development, intelligence, ambition, and personality. Cover image ©iStockphoto.com/susib
- University of Michigan Press, April 2010
University of Michigan Press
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