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Road Less Traveled for MCCC Professor,
Musician and Author Matthew Giobbi

10/7/10


West Windsor, N.J. - Matt Giobbi, Ph.D., assistant professor of psychology at Mercer County Community College, has realized the fruits of his labors in recent days. Giobbi boldly takes on the American psychological establishment in his new book, "A Postcognitive Negation: The Sadomasochistic Dialectic of American Psychology," published by Atropos Press (NYC/Dresden). In it, he examines the history of American psychological discourse, and posits the direction he believes the discipline needs to go in the future.

As he states in the book's introduction, "American psychology and psychologists remain firmly planted in an Enlightenment-age, mechanistic, reductionist world view." He points out that the rest of the sciences - physics, mathematics and biology - have moved on from this Newtonian viewpoint, but that "American psychology remains solidly a proponent of it." He poses these questions: "Can this deeply entrenched world view be dislodged? Is it possible to uproot such an embedded belief system?"

In Giobbi's view, scientific psychology is no longer a method, but has become a media event. He predicts his book will serve as a challenge to editorial boards of academic journals, which "are gatekeepers of the status quo and err on the side of safe ideas."
Matt Giobbi, Ph.D., with his new book

Early reviews of the book have been positive. Observes reviewer Robert Craig Baum, Ph.D., professor of psychology and philosophy at River Valley Community College, "With his formidable command of psychology, philosophy, cultural studies, and transdisciplinary psychology, this meditation/analysis/manifesto explores many unspoken (and feared) questions from within the field. Giobbi's clear willingness and unmistakable ability to encourage experimental psychologists to let go of their own privileged center and experience the ideology of a non-experimental paradigm envisions a more useful science."

Dr. Baum continues: "Giobbi has achieved the near impossible: a first book whose challenges go beyond the contemporary debates within psychology and restages the history of the problem itself without losing sight of the vitality and necessity of a radicalized transdisciplinary psychological model."

In another affirmation of his teaching and research, Giobbi recently received notice of a lifelong appointment as an Erich Fromm Postdoctoral Research Associate at The European Graduate School of Interdisciplinary Studies (EGS) in Switzerland. According to Giobbi, the appointment is a wonderful opportunity that will give him access to all seminars at the university, a platform to present his research, and an offer of publication of any research that he completes related to Erich Fromm.

"Fromm may prove even more relevant in the 21st century than in the 20th century," he says, noting that Fromm was very concerned with the future of the culture when he wrote in the 1960s. "It's great to know my next project will be published."

Giobbi's first career was as a musician. He was principal trombonist with Carnegie Hall's New York Youth Symphony and toured throughout China, India, Indonesia, Hong Kong, Singapore, and Europe with various symphony orchestras. In 1996 Giobbi served as principal trombonist for the Orquesta Filarmonica de Lima in Peru.

By the late 1990s, with many unanswered questions in mind, Giobbi turned his attention to the study of psychology and philosophy. In 2001 he received his B.S. in Psychology from East Stroudsburg University (PA) and, in 2004, his M.A. in Psychoanalytic Studies from the New School for Social Research (NY). He completed his Ph.D. at EGS in Media and Communications: Psychodynamic/Critical Media Theory in 2010.

In 2008 Giobbi established the International Association of Transdisciplinary Psychology and serves as the editor of its journal.

In addition to teaching at MCCC since 2006, he is an adjunct lecturer on the history and systems of psychology at Rutgers University, Newark, NJ, DeSales University (Allentown, PA), and East Stroudsburg University (PA).

Giobbi is an avid street photographer and participates as a contributing photographer in art and gallery events.

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