Life’s Junctures & Sustaining Qualities

Key Information

Life’s Junctures & Sustaining Qualities: Exploring the Dynamism Inherent in One’s Life Path & Attaining Equilibrium, By Michael Hooper

2019 [ISBN: 978-1-58107-335-5; 74 pages; 6 x 9 inch; soft cover] $15.95


This guidebook’s purpose is to emphasize the dynamism inherent in a life path and to identify key qualities that sustain one along a life’s journey, despite unanticipated intersections with people and events that affect life course changes.

The stimulus for initiating the book project came upon the author unexpectedly.  After earning a living for almost 50 years, he decided to embark on the life-changer known as “retirement.”  Surprisingly, something unanticipated occurred soon after taking the plunge:  He found himself preoccupied with the question, “How in the world did I arrive at the place where I’ve found myself today?”

That question launched the author on a self-examination and subsequent research study that resulted in this novel work.

The intended takeaway for the readership is twofold:  1) reduction in the angst suffered among young adults overly concerned about specificity in workplace or life track alignment, and 2) insight into sustaining qualities experienced by long-time life path travelers. 

Too, there is a takeaway for those of us who have been on life’s journey for eons.  We can retrace our past to ascertain junctures encountered and how we contended with them to arrive at where we find ourselves today, and how derivative qualities can lead to an optimal future state.  

The Contents


Chapter 1 – Introduction

Chapter 2 – Research Review

Chapter 3 – A Life Journey Case Study

Growing Up in Pennsylvania

Off to College in California

“You’re in the Army Now…..”

From the Military to the Quasi-Military, LAPD

Off to “Linebacker U”—Penn State

Back to the “Left Coast”

An Afterthought about Sustaining Qualities

Chapter 4 – Respondents’ Selections of Sustaining Qualities

Qualities Identified by Respondents

Qualities Identified by Students

Chapter 5 – Epilogue


About the Author

The Author

Michael Hooper, Ph.D., is currently a Lecturer in Criminology and Criminal Justice Studies at Sonoma State University.  Previously, he served with the California Department of Justice, Penn State University, and Los Angeles Police Department.  His most recent publications include co-authorship of the third edition of CJ: Realities and Challenges (a textbook published by McGraw-Hill, 2017) and lead editor of the second edition of Criminal Justice (a three-volume encyclopedia published by Salem Press in 2017). 

Throughout the course of his 40+ years in the criminal justice system as a practitioner and academic (and a stint in the U.S. Army), he observed the gamut of humankind and existences.  He had always pondered just how people came to where they ultimately found themselves in life.  The desire to actively pursue some degree of an answer to the question came recently while reflecting on students’ career ambition cards.  He was impressed with the specificity of career aspirations but, at the same time, struck by the realization that, in his experience, unanticipated intersections with people and events would likely intervene to affect life course changes.  Thus, this handbook was born from the quest to seek and impart to others the qualities that could prove sustaining amid a life’s journey—despite the inevitable twists and turns.

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