"[An] absorbing new book about why we choose to avert our gaze from wrongdoings or flaws or sad certainties we can't bring ourselves to confront. Willful Blindness cuts a broad swath across the fabric of our culture."
"Writing in clear, flowing prose . . . [Willful Blindness] made me think long and hard about how the pace and priorities of our daily lives can hinder our ability to live as decently and as truthfully as we can."
—The New York Times
“[A] riveting, important book. . . . [Heffernan] is an engaging writer able to marshal fascinating multi-disciplinary research into a narrative that traverses the quest for conformity, groupthink [and] how an overloaded mind leads to moral blindness. . . . Eye-opening.”
“A call to arms to any whistle-blowers who see what lies ahead and have the courage to speak up. . . . A sharp-eyed perspective on the ever-gathering storm.”
“A thoughtful and entertaining treatise on the seductiveness—and consequences—of ignoring what’s right in front of our eyes … Heffernan’s cogent, riveting look at how we behave at our worst encourages us to strive for our best.”
“Willful Blindness is an engaging read, packed with cautionary tales ripped from today’s headlines as well as a trove of research on why we often stick our head in the sand. With deft prose and page after page of keen insights, Heffernan shows why we close our eyes to facts that threaten our families, our livelihood, and our self-image—and, even better, she points the way out of the darkness.”
—Daniel H. Pink, author of Drive and A Whole New Mind
“An intelligent and eye-opening look at the pervasiveness of willful blindness across society. Margaret Heffernan presents overwhelming evidence of the need for mindfulness as part of the cure.”
—Ellen J. Langer, author of Mindfulness and Counterclockwise: Mindful Health and the Power of Possibility
“Willful Blindness combines compelling anecdotes, insightful interviews, and convincing scientific evidence to confront the mental distortions that conspire to blind us. Heffernan skillfully shows that by questioning the reasons for our actions and beliefs, we can take positive steps to avoid deluding ourselves.”
—Daniel Simons, coauthor of The Invisible Gorilla: And Other Ways Our Intuitions Deceive Us
Margaret Heffernan is an unblinking observer of what makes us tick in work and life. This is a book that everyone should read with eyes—and minds—wide open!”
—Alan M. Webber, author of Rules of Thumb: 52 Truths for Winning at Business Without Losing Your Self
“Heffernan speaks with a relentlessly constructive voice, brave curiosity, a passion for truth, and the practical mindset of someone who has built and led successful organizations herself. She motivates us to resist our own tendency to ignore the truths around us, and provides the insights and tools for us to empower others to do the same.”
—Mary C. Gentile, Ph.D., author of Giving Voice to Values: How to Speak Your Mind When You Know What’s Right
About the Author
MARGARET HEFFERNAN was born in Texas, raised in Holland and educated at Cambridge University. Her monthly column for Reader's Digest
is read by over 8 million readers. She writes articles that are syndicated internationally, and blogs for The Huffington Po
st. Margaret is a popular speaker and panelist, addressing corporations, industry groups and business schools. A former producer for BBC radio in the UK, she continues to develop programs for the BBC. As an entrepreneur she has built up two businesses: one advising public affair campaigns in Massachusetts and another advising software companies trying to break into multimedia. Her work in interactive multimedia led to her leadership of several businesses that were part of the Internet giant CMGI. Over the period that she worked for CMGI, its stock increased over 700%.Her books are The Naked Truth
, an expose of the environment for working women, and Women on Top
, about female CEOs. She is a Visiting Professor at the Simmons School of Management and at the University of Bath and is Executive in Residence at Babson College. She has homes in the UK and in New Hampshire.