Let’s face it, we’re all a little bit self-obsessed. Why else would BuzzFeed quizzes be so popular? But beyond what flavour ice cream you are, or which two Harry Potter characters mashed together make up your personality, there are more serious ways of studying your own personality, like books on personality types.
These can help not just with understanding yourself but also understanding others and being a better friend, son or daughter, father or mother, brother or sister. It can even help with writing fictional characters.
Because, of course, what’s the first place we turn to when we want to learn about something? Books. Anne Bogel has an excellent book which introduces personality types, called Reading People, so if you need a primer on the different ways people have come up with to understand humans, that’s a great place to start. Below are some further recommendations for books on personality types, with apologies for the lack of diversity.
Part of the reason for that lack of diversity, other than the usual societal and publishing issues, may be that a lot of these personality typing systems were developed by academics, using students as their research subjects – and those have historically skewed white, affluent, and, for a long time, male.