- Paperback: 320 pages
- Publisher: Oneworld Publications (4 Oct. 2012)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 1851689397
- ISBN-13: 978-1851689392
- Product Dimensions: 12.9 x 2 x 19.8 cm
- Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars See all reviews (156 customer reviews)
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 12,415 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
You Are Not So Smart: Why Your Memory Is Mostly Fiction, Why You Have Too Many Friends On Facebook And 46 Other Ways You're Deluding Yourself Paperback – 4 Oct 2012
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"In an Idiocracy dominated by cable TV bobbleheads, government propagandists, and corporate spinmeisters, many of us know that mass ignorance is a huge problem. Now, thanks to David McRaney's mind-blowing book, we can finally see the scientific roots of that problem. Anybody still self-aware enough to wonder why society now worships willful stupidity should read this book."
--David Sirota, author of "Back to Our Future: How the 1980s Explain the World We Live in Now--Our Culture, Our Politics, Our Everything"
“Simply wonderful. An engaging and useful guide to how our brilliant brains can go badly wrong.” Professor Richard Wiseman – author of 59 Seconds
“Fascinating! You’ll never trust your brain again.” Alex Boese – author of Elephants on Acid and Electric Sheep
“A much-needed field guide to the limits of our so-called consciousness.” William Poundstone – author of Are You Smart Enough to Work at Google?
“Want to get smarter? Read this book.”
David Eagleman – neuroscientist and author of Incognito
“Every chapter is a welcome reminder that you are not so smart – yet you're never made to feel dumb. You Are Not So Smart is a dose of psychology research served in tasty anecdotes that will make you better understand both yourself and the rest of us. Give yourself every advantage you can and read this book.”
Alexis Ohanian – co-founder of Reddit.com
‘populist [and] witty’ Evening Standard
"Every chapter is a welcome reminder that you are not so smart-yet you're never made to feel dumb. You Are Not So Smart is a dose of psychology research served in tasty anecdotes that will make you better understand both yourself and the rest of us. It turns out we're much more irrational than most of us think, so give yourself every advantage you can and read this book."(Alexis Ohanian - co-founder of Reddit.com)
Want to get smarter quickly? Read this book(David Eagleman - neuroscientist and author of Incognito: The Secret Lives of the Brain)
"Simply wonderful. An engaging and useful guide to how our brilliant brains can go badly wrong."(Richard Wiseman - bestselling author of :59 Seconds)
A much-needed field guide to the limits of our so-called consciousness. McRaney presents a witty case for just how witless we all are.(William Poundstone)
"Fascinating... After reading this book, you'll never trust your brain again."(Alex Boese - bestselling author of Elephants on Acid and Electric Sheep) See all Product Description
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Top Customer Reviews
By telling the story through 47 small bite sized chapters, each of which deals with a common area of our lives, the author manages to make serious science entertaining and humorous; an easy and light read. The author is also careful to keep on solid ground and not to make spurious or 'wacky' statements.
It really is shocking and very humbling to have to come to terms with how deluded we all are. Some of the chapters made uncomfortable reading for me personally, as I reluctantly had to admit that I myself am totally deluded in the way the author suggests.
But the realisation that we are personally deluded is an important one, and if everyone accepted this truth the world might become a better place with less dogmatism and less hatred. Maybe they should teach this stuff in junior school.
A mixture of 48 common and not so common beliefs proved wrong with the truth by case studies, reports and surveys etc. Some very intriguing and practical such as the truth behind procrastination and habit kicking written in short (2-5 page) chapters with an easy summary.
Some chapters 'truths' are left far too ambiguous and with little real world application or practical advice
A charming sunday afternoon/bath tub read which can make you think and may will have some practical uses
Without trying to describe any content it is noticeable that many of the more powerful topics are dealt with in clusters such as the priming of expections, confirmation/hindsight biases and self-serving but fulfilling narcissism that can blight and prop up our behaviours. Just for the record the aforementioned mental traps alone might account for a stack of self-development books, and then to add another 44 should give the reader an indication of the amount of condensing that had to be done to keep the book relatively brief and digestible.
However David McRaney presents a copious amount of phenomenonological research from the field of social psychology which would make a great introduction for anyone wanting to study for a psychology course in the subject -- however, has there yet to be a course for this kind of stuff ever invented? (see below).
I dare anyone not to read each chapter without a wry smile of recognition and amusement, especially as the style is deadly witty and irrevrently upbeat with the continual shocking mantra that "you are not so smart".Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Interesting little experiments that you will repeat to your friends, and look out for in your everyday. Not a book to consume in one go, but to pop into over a long period of time.Published 2 months ago by Pale Blue Dot
I came to this book after reading another writer's recommendations for overcoming "modern character neurosis", one of which was to get familiar with the content of your... Read morePublished 3 months ago by Lark
Finally a book talking about the cognitive biases. A little disappointed but it might just be because I've discovered how little smart I'm. Read morePublished 3 months ago by Tevin
McRaney is living proof that the best popularisers of scientific theory are not necessarily researchers themselves. His book is one of the best I have ever read! Read morePublished 7 months ago by Nick Michelioudakis
At last I can confirm what an idiot I really am. Great book. Recommended for sure.Published 8 months ago by Alan Roche
Great dash through a canon of modern day psychology to provide new insights, unusual discoveries and new thinking. Read morePublished 10 months ago by Andy Green
Great overview of loads of different psychological principles. Even if you know them all already, which you might do, it's still worth the read and includes some great examples,... Read morePublished 12 months ago by Jordan Buck