With the increasing interest in psychology, found not just in the business community but among the general public, it's always beneficial to share some of the major figures in the field from decades past.
One major figure in particular was Vance Packard (May 22, 1914 – December 12, 1996). Packard was an American journalist and social critic who authored a number of very insightful and prescient books including The Hidden Persuaders (1957) which was a exploration of the advertising industry and its use of psychology and persuasion.
In 1959, Packard wrote The Status Seekers which described American social stratification and behaviors.
And in 1960, Packard's The Waste Makers illuminated and criticized planned obsolescence describing the impact of American productivity, especially on the national character.
His 1964 book, The Naked Society clearly articulated the real threats to privacy posed by new technologies such as computerized filings, modern surveillance techniques and methods for influencing human behavior.
Reading Packard's works which were written decades ago and seeing how accurate his prognostications were (and, if anything, they were vastly understated - Room 641A, anyone?) shows what a genius he was.