Diversity and Complexity

Camilla Pagani, Ph.D.
Institute of Cognitive Sciences and Technologies (ISTC), National Research Council (CNR), Roma, Italy

Series: Social Psychology Research Progress
BISAC: SOC026000



Volume 10

Issue 1

Volume 2

Volume 3

Special issue: Resilience in breaking the cycle of children’s environmental health disparities
Edited by I Leslie Rubin, Robert J Geller, Abby Mutic, Benjamin A Gitterman, Nathan Mutic, Wayne Garfinkel, Claire D Coles, Kurt Martinuzzi, and Joav Merrick


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The book addresses the issue of the human relationship with diversity within a theoretical framework that considers not only the psycho-social perspective, but also – and pre-eminently – the perspective of complexity science. A broad definition of diversity is proposed, whereby diversity is all that is not the self or, more precisely, all that is not the present self. There is a focus on cross-cultural relations, especially with regards to young people, and on the themes of racism and empathy in this context.

The analysis draws on the considerable data obtained by the author and her research group in her study of children’s and adolescents’ attitudes towards multiculturalism. Interspecies diversity is considered as well, with a chapter devoted to the human relationship with animals supported by data obtained from the author’s research study on children’s and adolescents’ attitudes towards animals. Throughout the book, the main concepts and principles pertaining to complexity science and complex thinking are used, including systems, interconnection, emergent factors, non-linearity, uncertainty, responsibility, mutilating thought, and the contribution of art to scientific research. Two chapters address the relationship with diversity as it is presented in literature, cinema, and photography. In conclusion, the author’s view is that complexity is an intrinsic quality of reality, and that reality absolutely must be approached through the complexity lens.
(Imprint: Nova)


Chapter 1. A Definition of Diversity and its Rationale

Chapter 2. The Human Relationship with Sociocultural Diversity in the Social Sciences

Chapter 3. Defining Complexity

Chapter 4. The Benefits of Integrating a Socio-psychological Perspective and Complexity Theories

Chapter 5. Complexity and its Relationship with Diversity: An Analysis of Data from our Research on Children’s and Adolescents’ Attitudes to Multiculturalism

Chapter 6. Complex Thinking and Racism

Chapter 7. Complex Thinking and Empathy

Chapter 8. Diversity and Animals

Chapter 9. Diversity and Complexity in Literature

Chapter 10. Diversity and Complexity in Cinema and Photography

Chapter 11. Diversity, Complexity, New Visions, and Conclusions


"Two features, among others, make this book particularly inspiring: the author’s adoption of a broad definition of diversity and the analysis of our relationship with diversity especially within the perspective of complexity science. And, most interestingly, the book itself develops as a complex system where, among other things, the presence of the Subject is continuously acknowledged and underlined." For a little further review of the book, click here. - J. Martin Ramirez, MD, PhD, Full Professor & Head, Center for Conflict Studies, Nebrija University; Fellow of the World Academy of Art and Science; Chair of CICA International

Marzanna Farnicka, PhD, Developmental Psychopathology Department, Institute of Psychology, Zielona Góra University - To read the review, click here.

Keywords: Diversity, complexity, complex thinking, cross-cultural relations, racism, empathy, human-animal relations, education, complexity and diversity in cinema, photography, and literature.

Audience: Social psychologists, socio-cultural and cross-cultural psychologists, complex systems scientists, political scientists, art theorists, people interested in interhuman relationships, in human-animal relations, and in the aesthetic experience

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