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"reverse psychology" - U Chicago - Extended Essay


benzene 1 / 1  
Dec 21, 2011   #1
I choose the essay prompt "Don't write about reverse psychology." I have another draft of this prompt, but the following really comes from my intuition :) and just give me some advice :)

Here is my essay:

Preface: I am a typical teenager with a little bit rebellious temper; therefore I will definitely write about reverse psychology!

When the essay prompt came to my eyes, I didn't think of the platitudinous psychological examples, which I later found stated in Wikipedia; instead, I was reminded of something interesting that can be regarded as special manifestations of reverse psychology.

I first related a scientific law to this psychological phenomenon in my chemistry class. In that class, my teacher taught me chemical equilibrium and I learnt a mysterious principle called Le Chatelier's Principle, which indicated that "if a chemical system at equilibrium experiences a change in concentration, temperature, volume, or partial pressure, then the equilibrium shifts to counteract the imposed change and a new equilibrium is established".

It was such a long and complicated adverbial clause of condition that I repeated the sentence and started to read the example of the principle; then all my attention was caught by the word COUNTERACT. I thought it too "chemical", or too "scientific", so I replaced it with REBEL. At once, the principle seemed more familiar to me and a picture formed gradually in my head. I saw a mom asking her son to finish the summer vacation homework. However, because of the rebellious temper, the son refused to obey the order and started to play computer games for a whole day as soon as his mother closed the door and went out for work.

I was certain that every person, including me, had once experienced such a thing and knew the process of rebellion - technically speaking, the reverse psychology. But till the chemistry class where I learnt about Le Chatelier's Principle, I had never matched a scientific law with reverse psychology due to my stubborn belief that physical science and humanities could not be tied together at all. Despite my "belief", I still decided to look for more evidence, because my intuition told me that what I had found was not an exception.

Unexpectedly yet unsurprisingly, I did discover some interesting evidence. First came physics: the Lenz's Law, friction force, the inductive reactance of coils...Evidence also lied in biology, such as important balances of human body (water-salt balance, thermoregulation, blood sugar regulation...) and of ecological populations (external and internal balances). All the examples I found can be described in the same way: a system receives some imposed changes; then, some of its elements function, rebelling against such changes. Even though the whole process has nothing to do with human mind, it is in amazing accordance with reverse psychology; therefore, in my opinion, such scientific laws and phenomena should be considered the expressions of reverse psychology, at least in a broad sense.

However, what impresses me most now is not the conclusion or supposition I made, but the fact I found during the evidence-gathering process, that human beings are taking "reverse psychology" as an excuse in order to benefit from the nature excessively. Every day, tons of polluted gases and liquids are discharged into the sky and the sea; a great number of wild animals are killed simply for their furs, organs or something else profitable; and countless trees are cut down for agriculture and industry. But we still enjoy our life, unconcerned about the crimes we have done, simply because we keep an idea that "reverse psychology" helps nature counteract everything imposed on it: nothing will become abnormal! Of course, I don't deny the scientific fact that some of the harm we cause can be counteracted by the reverse psychology of the nature, but I really suspect that as situations get worse, the nature will start to take revenge on us, obeying ITS different reverse psychology. At that time, can we succeed rebelling against the nature by using OUR reverse psychology?
babygurl2012 4 / 15  
Dec 21, 2011   #2
I like your diction. You have a great topic as well!
WelcomeCollege 3 / 10  
Dec 21, 2011   #3
I applied to UChicago EA, and I suggest you make your essay more unique and vivid.
OP benzene 1 / 1  
Dec 21, 2011   #4
Should I change my topic to a unique one?


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