Why do people join cults?

Today, there are thousands of cults around the world. Broadly speaking, a cult is a group or movement with a shared commitment to a usually extreme ideology that's typically embodied in a charismatic leader. But what exactly differentiates cults from other groups – and why do people join them? Janja Lalich describes how cults recruit and manipulate their members. [Directed by Globizco, narrated by Addison Anderson, music by Manuel Borda].

 
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HOW TO FIND A QUALIFIED THERAPIST

Are you asking yourself, "How do I find a qualified therapist to help me with mental-health treatment related to my experiences?"

 

SOME OF THE GAME-CHANGERS
IN OUR FIELD

ROBERT JAY LIFTON

Thought Reform and the Psychology of Totalism

EDGAR SCHEIN

Coercive Persuasion

STANLEY MILGRAM

Obedience to Authority

ERVING GOFFMAN

Asylums

LEON FESTINGER

When Prophecy Fails

MARGARET THALER SINGER

Cults in Our Midst

PHILIP ZIMBARDO

The Lucifer Effect: Understanding How Good People Turn Evil

ROBERT CIALDINI

Influence: The New Modern Psychology of Persuasion

JUDITH HERMAN

Trauma and Recovery

 
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RECOMMENDED READING

These are some of the best books and publications about cults, thought reform, and related topics. Some of these titles may be out of print or difficult to find, but many are well worth the search.