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The Dance of Deception

A Guide to Authenticity and Truth Telling in Women's Relationships
Narrated by: Harriet Lerner
Length: 2 hrs and 59 mins
3.5 out of 5 stars (5 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

When The Dance of Deception was published, Lerner discovered that women were not eager to identify with the subject. "Well, I don't do deception" was a common response.

We all "do deception", often with the intention to protect ourselves and the relationships we depend on. The Dance of Deception unravels the ways (and whys) that women show the false and hide the real - even to our own selves. We see how relationships are affected by lying and faking, by silence and pretending and by brave - but misguided - efforts to tell the truth.

Truth-telling is at the heart of what is most central in women's lives. It is at the foundation of authenticity and creativity, intimacy and joy. Yet in the name of "honesty", we can bludgeon each other. We can approach a difficult issue with such a poor sense of timing and tact that we can actually shut down the lines of communication rather than widening the path of truth-telling.

Sometimes Lerner's advice takes a surprising turn - for example, when she asks us to engage in a bold act of pretending in order to discover something "more real"; or when she tells us not to parachute down on our family to bring up a "hot issue" without laying the necessary groundwork first.

Whether the subject is affairs, family secrets, sexual faking or the challenge of "being oneself", Lerner helps us to discover, speak, and live our own truths.

©1993 Harriet Lerner, PhD (P)2004 HarperCollins Publishers

What listeners say about The Dance of Deception

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Tedious

I found it difficult to 'see' past the narrators voice which engendered a sense of tedium to this book. I could not bring myself to hear it out in its entirety

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Did I miss something

I have to listen again I feel like it was a bit disjointed and not as much info on the dynamics behind deception as some of her other books

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Interesting but confusing at times

This audiobook provided some interesting insights into deception, the different names we have for deception as both a destructive and protective tool, and those forms of societal and self-deception women have been taught to internalise via a patriarchal system.

Lerner provided the reading for this book in her usually engaging and approachable manner, and a number of the stories and perspectives she provided were truly interesting.

Where I feel this book falls apart a bit is that I do not get the same sense of a coherent and structure argument as I have received from The Dance of Anger.
Lerner generally seems to leave a lot of the decision making about how to address deception in our personal and public lives to the listener, which is great since I honestly appreciate her non-prescriptive tone. However, I feel that the exposé on how women, via patriarchal instruments, are affected by deception, was a bit lost in some waffle on different understandings of deception. In short, I feel she tried to cover a bit too much, but overall still provided an excellent book.

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  • Tracy Mehoke
  • 01-08-2020

A good reminder toward personal authenticity and societal inclusion

I started listening to this book because I was hoping it would give some helpful suggestions for laying the groundwork to be able to represent oneself more authentically to others in a way that makes the conversation easier.

The book is actually more about the ways that women often feel required to bend or obscure their own truth to fit into society. So, it does have useful ideas and examples for questioning expectations, and learning to trust your own interpretations, but not very much about specifically finding ways of communicating these to others. (At least, not beyond being more aware of them for yourself, which is always good)

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 08-03-2020

Fantastic

Widening the path to truth telling! This is fantastic and necessary text! I love it

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  • Gina
  • 01-09-2015

Good Message

Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

Yes

Have you listened to any of Harriet Lerner’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

No

What’s the most interesting tidbit you’ve picked up from this book?

Honesty is still the best policy even though people deceive for what they believe are good reasons. .

Any additional comments?

Not the greatest narrator. Book was a little disjointed

1 person found this helpful