WHAT'S YOUR TYPE?: Story of the Myers-Briggs

WHAT'S YOUR TYPE?: Story of the Myers-Briggs

MERVE EMRE    Book Number: 90899    Product format: Paperback

Are you an analyst, diplomat, sentinel or explorer? An introvert or an extrovert? You may well have taken a personality test in your life, whether for a job or potential love match. If it was after the 1920s, it may well have been based off the Myers-Briggs, a widely popular personality test which was first conceived of by mother-daughter team Katherine Briggs and Isabel Briggs Myers. Explore the fascinating lives of these two women, from the 'cosmic laboratory of baby training' (also known as the living room) where Katherine not only trained Isabel but their neighbours' less well behaved children, to Isabel's murder mystery novels throughout the 1920s and Katherine's two obsessions: amateur dream analysis and Carl Jung's system of type. But, among all of this, where were the first stirrings of the test? The author puts it down to the summer of 1918 in a Memphis boarding house where Isabel would daily attend the United States Employment Agency and the Girl's Club, trying to work out what she was able to do as work. Isabel noted in her diary that a woman can do a man's work as well as he but it takes more out of her which led her to believe that there should be an intelligent division of labour where everybody works but not at the wrong things - the test would go on to do the dividing. History also plays a big part in the biography, from the first format of the Myers-Briggs test on the day Pearl Harbor was bombed, to Katherine's application of personality traits on historical figures, not only to Hitler during the Second World War, but US President Franklin D. Roosevelt whose "state Socialism" she decried. The book also has brilliant images, including an original rubric and type profile of the Myers-Briggs Test in 1943, a photograph of five year old Isabel clinging to Katherine's neck, and even Katherine's collage for her husband, Lyman's dream called "An Embarrassment of Femininity" which includes the Mona Lisa, a pink flower in full bloom and a well-groomed couple. This is a fantastic history of a test that has literally defined people's personalities and its fascinating creators. Paperback, illus, 311pp.
Published price: £9.99
Bibliophile price: £2.50

Additional product information

ISBN 9780008201418
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