PREFACE Abnormal psychology is among the most popular areas of study in psychology and for good reason. The problems it addresses are of immense personal and social importance--problems that touch the lives of us all in one way or another. They include problems that are all too pervasive, such as depression, sexual dysfunctions, obesity, and alcohol and substance abuse. They include problems that are less common but have a profound impact on all of us, such as schizophrenia. The problems addressed in this book are thus not of the few. The majority of us will experience one or more of them at some time or another. Or a friend or loved one will experience them. Even those who do not personally experience these problems will be touched by society's response--or lack of response--to them. Essentials of Abnormal Psychology in a Changing Worldmaintains the style and substance that have distinguished the full version of the text, including the use of many case examples and self-scoring questionnaires, a clear and engaging writing style that is accessible but does not compromise rigor; research-based and comprehensive in coverage; superior pedagogy; and integration of sociocultural material throughout, including coverage of issues relating to cultural diversity, gender, and lifestyle. Essentials of Abnormal Psychology in a Changing Worldprovides students with the basic concepts in the field in a convenient 14-chapter format. The first 13 chapters cover historical and theoretical perspectives, approaches to psychological assessment and treatment, and the major types of psychological disorders, including adjustment disorders, anxiety disorders, mood disorders, substance-related disorders, personality disorders, gender identity and sexual disorders, schizophrenia and disorders of childhood and adolescence. The concluding chapter covers topics that lie at the interface of abnormal psychology and society: psychiatric commitment, patient's rights, and the insanity defense. Like the full version of the text, this briefer edition integrates sociocultural material relating to ethnicity, gender, culture, and lifestyle throughout the text and in highlighted boxed features ("Focus on Diversity"). Attention to issues of diversity is clearly consistent with the importance given to cultural factors in the DSM-IV and the need to bring these important issues to the attention of the beginning student in abnormal psychology. We approached the writing of this text with the belief that a textbook should no more than offer a portrait of a field of knowledge. It should be a teaching device--a means of presenting information in ways that arouse interest and encourage understanding and critical thinking. Toward these ends, we speak to the reader in a clear expository style. We attempt to render complex material accessible. We put a human face on the subjects we address by including many case examples drawn from our own clinical files and those of other mental health professionals. We stimulate and involve students through carefully chosen pedagogical features, questionnaires, highlights, and applications. We also include a built-in study guide designed to help students master difficult material. And yes, we keep abreast of our ever-changing subject by bringing to our readers a wealth of new scientific information drawn from the leading scientific journals and organizations. Essentials of Abnormal Psychology in a Changing Worldexposes students to the multiple perspectives that inform our present understandings of abnormal behavior--the psychological, sociocultural, and biological domains. We adopt an interactionist approach which recognizes that abnormal behavior typically involves a complex interplay of multiple factors representing different domains. Because the concept of integrating diverse perspectives is often difficult for beginning studentsJeffrey S. Nevid Ph.D. is the author of 'Essentials of Abnormal Psychology in a Changing World', published 2000 under ISBN 9780130875518 and ISBN 0130875511.