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Quiet: The Power of Introverts in a World That Can't Stop Talking Hardcover – Jan 24 2012


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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 352 pages
  • Publisher: Crown; 1 edition (Jan. 24 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0307352145
  • ISBN-13: 978-0307352149
  • Product Dimensions: 23.9 x 16.3 x 3.3 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 567 g
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (95 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #17,263 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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32 of 32 people found the following review helpful By urbanarc on June 16 2012
Format: Hardcover
As a young introvert, I have long wondered about myself. Why is it that I don't LOVE going to bars and clubs when all my friends have such a great time? Why is it that I am comfortable spending a weekend in the comfort of my own home with a good book, when everyone else seems to want to have a loud dinner and hang out?

The book is well-written and engaging from beginning to end. The information is relevant and applicable. The information is presented in a highly readable (and not overly academic) manner. Through reading it, I've gained insight into who I am and why I should accept my personality and all its idiosyncrasies.

I consider myself blessed to have read Ms. Cain's book. I would recommend this book to not just fellow introverts, but to extroverts as well. Everyone benefits from understanding introverts a little bit more.
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93 of 96 people found the following review helpful By Robert Morris HALL OF FAMETOP 10 REVIEWER on Feb. 13 2012
Format: Hardcover
Throughout most of her book, Susan Cain takes a balanced approach to the immensely difficult task of examining the advantages and disadvantages of being primarily an introvert as well as those of being primarily an extrovert. I use the term 'primarily' in the context of culture as well as one's temperament, personality, preferences, tendencies, and (yes) volition. 'If given a choice'' is a helpful phrase. Some people dread being the center of attention whereas the behavior of others indicates a pathological need for it. Not all introverts are shy and reluctant, however, and not all extroverts are bombastic and impulsive. Moreover, expediency can also come into play. As Walt Whitman affirms in 'Song of Myself,' each person is 'large''and contains 'multitudes.'

When writing her book, Cain was guided and informed by research in social science (e.g. Carl Jung, Jerome Kagan, Elaine Aron, C.A. Valentine, David Winter) supplemented by what she had learned from her own observations. She examines the inadequacies of several concepts such as charismatic leadership, the New Groupthink, the "Extrovert Ideal" (i.e. "the omnipresent belief that the ideal self is gregarious, alpha, and comfortable in the spotlight"), being or at least seeming "cool," collaborative innovation, and being a more "assertive" student in the classroom. Historians' accounts and media coverage must share at least some of the blame for widespread but remarkably durable misconceptions about eminent persons such as Warren Buffett, Dale Carnegie, Albert Einstein, Mohandas Gandhi, Rosa Parks, Steven Spielberg, and Steve Wozniak. However great their impact on others may be, all are (or were) essentially introverted. What else do they share in common?
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Nicholas on June 16 2013
Format: Paperback
Review courtesy of www.subtleillumination.com

“The secret to life is to put yourself in the right lighting. For some, it’s a Broadway spotlight; for others, a lamplit desk. Use your natural powers — of persistence, concentration, and insight — to do work you love and work that matters. Solve problems, make art, think deeply.” – Susan Cain

Action. Boldness. Charisma. Harvard Business School and modern society are unanimous on the importance of these values. Not achieving them, therefore, signals failure: that we are too introspective, too reflective, and too contemplative. Susain Cain disagrees, and in Quiet argues that society grossly undervalues introversion. Choosing not to go to the party, or indeed to hide in the bathroom when you’re at the party, is not a sign of weakness: rather, it’s simply a preference for a life with less external stimulation, a model society might do well to learn from.

To understand introversion, she traces it back to childhood. Highly reactive children, ones who respond strongly to stimulus, are actually more likely to be introverts than low reactive children. It is people who find external stimulation overwhelming who therefore seek to limit that stimulation, and so become more inwardly focused. For Cain, it’s a biological difference, not disadvantage.

Studying fish, she points out that bold fish are more likely to rush into traps and get caught than shy fish, but once in captivity, bold fish start eating the food earlier than shy fish and have a much higher survival rate. For humans, introversion predicts academic success in university better than cognitive ability, and an introvert’s focus on reflection means that in the lab they spend longer on tasks and do better at them.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By shuttie27 on Dec 15 2012
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I'm an introvert and unshamed of it. This is a great book for both introverts and extroverts to read. For introverts, because it .explains why we act and feel as we do, especially in the extro-slanted North American culture. For extroverts, because it explains to them (if they are interested) how the other half of the world works, and how they need us in order to provide balance and sanity in a world that has gone mad. My wife is a confirmed, dyed-in-the-wool extrovert (they say opposites attract!); I think she now understands me a little better, which is nice for both of us!
The chapters on business and religion are excellent, and explained a lot to me. If only businesses would take these things to heart!
The one weakness of the book is towards the end. It seems to peter out with a long "sermon" on how to bring up your (possibly) introverted child. Now of course it is important for parents of young children to understand who they are dealing with, but since those days are long past in my life, I found it rather tedious.
But all in all, a great read, a great source of inspiration, and a book that everyone should read.
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