The Science of Sin (US) / The Joy of Sin (UK)

Pride, lust, gluttony, greed, envy, sloth, and anger.

These seven sins are considered “deadly” because of their capacity to generate other evils. The truth is, we all sin and we do it all the time – in fact, usually several times over before breakfast! But human behaviour, argues social psychologist Simon M Laham, is more complex than “good” or “evil.” In psychology, these sins aren’t considered morally wrong or even uniformly bad but are instead treated as complex and interesting psychological states that, if indulged in wisely, can be functional and adaptive, and can lead to a range of positive effects.

The Science of Sin takes these so-called sins one by one and through psychological research shows that being bad can be oh so good for you. Did you know that:
· Being slow and lazy can help you win the race?
· Anger makes you more open-minded?
· Coveting what others have not only makes you more creative but bolsters self-esteem?

So go that last cookie and kick back on the couch for a day of TV with your neighbour’s boyfriend. From gluttony to greed, envy to lust, Laham shows how even the deadliest, most decadent of vices can make you smart, successful, and happy.


“In his engaging new book, Laham takes us on a sinfully delicious tour of human nature that reveals the bright side of our dark side.”

— Daniel Gilbert, author of Stumbling on Happiness

"A light-hearted foray into motivational research."

— Kirkus Reviews

"Laham makes social psychology entertaining yet provides a thoughtful and critical analysis."

— Library Journal

"...eviably good writing..."

— New Scientist

"Laham humorously illustrates his points and leaves you sinfully surprised."

— Psychology Today

"Laham provides expert analysis without bombarding readers with technical terms. It’s a fun, rapid read, but also a probing look at an engrossing field of scientific inquiry."

— Science News

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