You may not believe it, but there is a link between our current political instability and your childhood attachment to teddy bears. There's also a reason why children in Asia are more likely to share than their Western counterparts and why the poor spend more of their income on luxury goods than the rich. Or why your mother is more likely to leave her money to you than your father. What connects these things? The answer is our need for ownership. Award-winning psychologist Bruce Hood draws on research from his own lab and others around the world to explain why this uniquely human preoccupation governs our behaviour from the cradle to the grave, even when it is often irrational and destructive. What motivates us to buy more than we need? Is it innate, or cultural? How does our urge to acquire control our behaviour, even the way we vote? And what can we do about it? Timely, engaging and persuasive, Possessed is the first book to explore how ownership has us enthralled in relentless pursuit of a false happiness, with damaging consequences for society and the planet - and how we can stop buying into it.