The Origins of You: How Childhood Shapes Later Life

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$35.00  $32.55
Harvard University Press
Publish Date
6.2 X 9.2 X 1.6 inches | 1.85 pounds

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About the Author

Jay Belsky is the Robert M. and Natalie Reid Dorn Professor of Human Development at the University of California, Davis. He was a founding investigator of the NIH Study of Early Child Care and Youth Development in the United States and the National Evaluation of Sure Start in the United Kingdom. He received the Urie Bronfenbrenner Award from the American Psychological Association.
Richie Poulton is Professor of Psychology at the University of Otago in New Zealand, where he serves as codirector of the National Centre for Lifecourse Research. An elected fellow of the Royal Society of New Zealand, he received the New Zealand Prime Minister's Science Prize for the Dunedin Multidisciplinary Health and Development Study.
Avshalom Caspi is the Edward M. Arnett Professor of Psychology and Neuroscience at Duke University and Professor of Personality Development at King's College London. He is a recipient of the American Psychological Association Award for Distinguished Scientific Contributions to Psychology.
Terrie E. Moffitt is the Nannerl O. Keohane University Professor at Duke University and Professor of Social Behaviour and Development at King's College London. She has received a host of honors, including the 2022 Grawemeyer Award in Psychology and the Stockholm Prize in Criminology, and is a member of the National Academy of Medicine.


The Origins of You brings the groundbreaking research of the top developmental psychologists of the past quarter-century to a wider audience. The book captures the genius and visionary stature of its authors and illustrates their profound influence on the current and future thinking of the field. A masterpiece!--Dante Cicchetti, Institute for Child Development at the University of Minnesota
It's hard to imagine a better introduction to the way that contemporary developmental scientists think than The Origins of You, and it is hard to think of a more qualified group of writers, themselves among the most important, creative, and accomplished scholars in the field, to serve as guides. In much the same way that Bronfenbrenner's The Ecology of Human Development forever changed the way we think about the environment, this book will change the way we think about the process of development itself. The Origins of You is destined to become a classic.--Laurence Steinberg, author of Age of Opportunity: Lessons from the New Science of Adolescence
The Origins of You poses a question that is both timely and timeless: how does each of us become the unique person we are? Drawing upon the most authoritative psychological studies ever conducted on the topic, the authors offer a treasure trove of remarkable insights that both underscore the complexity of human development and affirm the power of human resilience.--Dan P. McAdams, author of The Art and Science of Personality Development
A fascinating book from an outstanding team of scientists, dedicated to answering the central questions about how lives develop.--Anne Petersen, University of Michigan
The Origins of You deserves to be read by everyone who wants to understand human development.--David P. Farrington, Cambridge University
This book's authors, having plumbed their data in depth, deliver a flood of insights around the book's central question: To what degree do our childhood personalities and behaviors predict our adult selves?--John Donvan "Wall Street Journal" (8/25/2020 12:00:00 AM)
Will prove one of the best and most important works of the last few years...Fascinating.--Tyler Cowen "Marginal Revolution" (3/7/2020 12:00:00 AM)
For those new to cohort literature, The Origins of You is an engaging introduction. For those familiar with this work, it is a chance to hear the authors thinking aloud, debating the best approaches and pondering what to study next. We can be certain that those conversations will now include how best to use these rich longitudinal resources to understand the effects of COVID-19.--Barbara Maughan "Nature" (9/15/2020 12:00:00 AM)
Engaging...Displays scope and curiosity, as the authors look at genetic factors, whether early circumstances can forecast certain later developmental outcomes, how and if the family experience and the environmental situation shape aspects of later life, and the role of the childhood experience in determining elements of adult health.-- "Kirkus Reviews" (4/15/2020 12:00:00 AM)
This thought-provoking volume should fascinate psychology students.-- "Publishers Weekly" (5/20/2020 12:00:00 AM)
Tells us which types of children grow up to be which types of adults, and it offers hints as to how childhood experiences can aid or hinder human development...A must-read.--Robert VerBruggen "Institute for Family Studies blog" (8/11/2020 12:00:00 AM)
A compelling journey exploring the results of the Dunedin Multidisciplinary Health and Development Study...Its findings are the x-marks-the-spot treasure trove that will help teachers, school administrators, and child psychologists support the growth and development of children.--Laura Petillo "New Zealand Journal of Educational Studies" (8/30/2022 12:00:00 AM)