Former Canton resident pens book about human behavior
Friday, November 10, 2017 - 2:38 pm

CANTON -- A former Canton resident and who taught at SUNY Canton has published a book about the 100–year–old natural science of human behavior known as behaviorology.

“While working to solve global problems, many natural scientists have noted that solutions require changes in human behavior, and they have called for a natural science of behavior that can help,” author Stephen F. Ledoux said. “As it turns out, the topic has an even wider audience.”

To satisfy that audience, SUNY Canton professor Stephen Ledoux spent the last year writing a general audience primer about behaviorology.

His book is titled "What Causes Human Behavior—Stars, Selves, or Contingencies?” and was released this year by BehaveTech Publishing in Ottawa.

“Interest in the causes of human behavior is widespread,” he said. “Witness the large number of books related to this topic on the self–help, new–age, and psychology shelves in stores and online lists. But these books leave out the causes of behavior discovered by natural science. Yet these causes are valuable aids to humanity, helping to solve local and global problems.”

Behaviorology is the natural science extension of biology that addresses why human behavior happens; it is a natural science to help build a sustainable society in a timely manner, Ledoux said. "Behaviorology, which is not any kind of psychology, helps people understand human behavior through the variables discovered by experimental research. The findings apply across every behavior related field, from families and education and autism to work and government and diplomacy.”

Emphasizing plain English rather than technical jargon, Ledoux's book uses ordinary examples of everyday human behaviors to convey, in a friendly and conversational manner, a basic comprehension of behaviorology. The book is written for anyone concerned to understand human behavior in a wide range of areas including concerns about environmental issues and human survival.

The first half of the book describes some principles, methods, concepts, and practices of behaviorology. Then the second half provides some initial scientific answers to some long–standing human questions, such as questions about values, rights, ethics, morals, language, consciousness, personhood, life, death, and reality. Interconnections with solutions to global problems appear in the last chapter. At the back, the book contains an appendix, by B. F. Skinner, about the "aircrib," along with a glossary, bibliography, and index. Also, a dozen mini–review comments from professional readers around the world grace the book's back cover and first couple of pages.

Two years ago, just before retiring from SUNY–Canton, Dr. Ledoux's publisher released his longer, more comprehensive but also more technical book, "Running Out of Time—Introducing Behaviorology to Help Solve Global Problems."

Ledoux, who was a Canton resident for over 30 years, now resides in New Mexico. His books are available from Brewer Bookstore in Canton and Direct Book Services (1-800-776-2665).