- Hardcover: 368 pages
- Publisher: Allen Lane (6 Dec. 2016)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0241254736
- ISBN-13: 978-0241254738
- Product Dimensions: 16.2 x 3.3 x 24 cm
- Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars See all reviews (35 customer reviews)
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 304 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
The Undoing Project: A Friendship that Changed the World Hardcover – 6 Dec 2016
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Michael Lewis is a brilliant writer... The Undoing Project is a masterclass in narrative non-fiction (Steven Poole Spectator)
A new book by Michael Lewis promises an absorbing story, dazzling ideas, journalistic flair and originality. He achieves this with extraordinary consistency. In The Undoing Project he has achieved it again. (Danny Finkelstein The Times)
Kahneman and Tversky's deep friendship and intellectual collaboration has arguably done as much to define our world as, say, the intertwining between Francis Crick and James Watson... Michael Lewis, with his great gift for humanising complex and abstract ideas, is exactly the storyteller Tversky and Kahneman deserve. (Tim Adams Observer)
I normally write two or three pages of notes when reviewing a book. On this occasion I scribbled six, often in high excitement. Lewis has a strong journalist's sense of a good story and the book is dotted with hundreds. He also has a feeling for pace and intensity. Although this is an easy read, nothing is wasted and everything seems to be in the right place. And what a story it is! (Bryan Appleyard Sunday Times)
Michael Lewis is perhaps my favourite writer full stop. At his best, Lewis engages both heart and brain like no author, and he tells the story of Tversky and Kahneman beautifully... the final sections will have you weeping (Robert Colvile Daily Telegraph)
Leaves you feeling cleverer (Katie Law Evening Standard)
Part biography of a friendship and part account of psychology's impact, while also taking in much of modern Israel's history, this is a fine showcase of Mr Lewis's range ... it is a story of remarkable individuals succeeding through innovative ideas ... Lewis has managed the unusual feat of interweaving psychology and the friendship between two men (Economist)
Gripping ... There is war, heroism, genius, love, loss, discovery, enduring loyalty and friendship. It is epic stuff ... Michael Lewis is one of the best non-fiction writers of our time. The writing has wit, passion and scientific credibility (Pete Lunn Irish Times)
Michael Lewis is perhaps my favourite writer full stop ... he engages both heart and brain like no other author, and he tells the story of Tversky and Kahneman beautifully (Robert Colville Telegraph)
Michael Lewis could spin gold out of any topic he chose ... his best work ... vivid, original and hard to forget (Tim Harford Financial Times)
It's good to be reminded every now and again what genius looks like (Malcolm Gladwell)
Probably the best current writer in America. (Tom Wolfe)
The kind of writer who creates his own weather system (John Lanchester)
Michael Lewis specializes in narratives about quirky individuals who zig when everyone else zags (The New York Times)
About the Author
Michael Lewis's global bestselling books lift the lid on the biggest stories of our times. They include Flash Boys, a game-changing exposé of high-speed scamming; The Big Short, which was made into a hit Oscar-winning film; Moneyball, the story of a maverick outsider who beat the system; and Liar's Poker, the book that defined the excesses of the 1980s. Many of the ideas from these bestsellers underpin his latest book, The Undoing Project, which is the result of years of research. Michael Lewis was born in New Orleans and educated at Princeton University and the London School of Economics. He writes for Vanity Fair magazine.
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Top Customer Reviews
The book is written in a chatty style and breaks the hard maths and jargon laden concepts into smaller, easier chunks for the layman like me with a tired brain at bedtime to be able to understand.Very good.
Lewis has built a career on examining how people exploit an intellectual edge. See, for example his, The Blind Side. This new book sits easily alongside his previous three best sellers. In it he describes an exciting intellectual partnership between Kahneman and Amos Tversky an Israeli academic who had worked in their military services. In so doing he had discovered that pilots flying improved after being told off. It declined if they were praised. It had to do with the simple statistical regression to the mean.
The two psychologists began a long intense academic relationship looking into human behaviour. They published work showing that humans are deeply flawed and full of foibles. Almost inevitably the relationship became fraught with rivalry and jealousy. Resentment developed as one got more praise than the other. In the end they broke off their relationship. Shortly afterwards, Amos informed Daniel he had terminal cancer. He died in 1996 aged 59.
The book also deals with their ideas, ideas that demonstrated that we make many, many intellectual mistakes. There are links here to Lewis' other books, particularly Moneyball. These ideas are explained with such clarity that the general reader should have no problem understanding them.Read more ›
One of Michael Lewis’s books I had previously read was Moneyball about Oakland Athletics quest to find new and better players. They did not have the money of other clubs to spend on the most expensive players but they developed systematic ways of finding value where baseball experts (management, talent scouts, journalists) did not find it.
But after Moneyball was published, Michael Lewis realised that he was telling a more general story - about the way the human mind worked when it was forming judgements and making decisions under uncertainty. He discovered that a pair of Israeli psychologists - Daniel Kahneman and Amos Tversky - had developed theories on the limitations of rational man, assumed by economists, when making decisions under uncertainty.
This is a very personal story of the dire circumstances of the two refugees raised in Nazi Europe and Russia who met in the young state of Israel. They develop a tight working relationship and produced insights into human behaviour based on empirical evidence. They assiduously tested all their ideas on their students so their theories were soundly based on evidence in contrast to much conventional psychological and philosophical work.
In the 1960’s Israel which was in constant war conditions with the British and then the Arabs. Danny and Amos were active service soldiers as well as psychology students/ teachers personally involved in close combat fighting and with close friends dying.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Michael Lewis always writes well, he picks human stories that illustrate abstract material (flash trading, sports' coaches inability to assess ability). Read morePublished 3 days ago by A. I. Mackenzie
Sorry Michael, you're a great author and I've bought all your books and really enjoyed them but this was a tough read. Bought it a few weeks ago and still haven't finished it. Read morePublished 3 days ago by Calculus
Two fascinating, innovative and insightful men: an astonishing relationship and story told well. Can't quite believe that having read of their ideas, the output of others I had no... Read morePublished 4 days ago by Michael Cooper
An inspiring story told by a consummate story teller, a buoyant mix of historical facts, theories, events in the world economics and in psychology.Published 6 days ago by Madalina Dubiczki
I’ve read quite a few books on popular psychology and behavioural economics so I expected to skim a bit but I was gripped by The Undoing Project from start to finish. Read morePublished 8 days ago by Kate Vane
I already had a good understanding of the work of Tversky and Khaneman prior to reading this book. For those new to the field of Behavioural Economics this may not be the best... Read morePublished 13 days ago by D. Richman
What an odd book, I thought. It appears to be a kind of twin biography of two Israeli psychologists. Read morePublished 15 days ago by Petrolhead