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Outliers: The Story of Success by [Malcolm Gladwell]
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Outliers: The Story of Success Kindle Edition

4.6 out of 5 stars 10,528 ratings

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Length: 321 pages Word Wise: Enabled Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
Page Flip: Enabled

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About the Author

Malcolm Gladwell is the author of five New York Times bestsellers: The Tipping Point,Blink, Outliers,What the Dog Saw, and David and Goliath. He is also the co-founder of Pushkin Industries, an audio content company that produces the podcasts Revisionist History, which reconsiders things both overlooked and misunderstood, and Broken Record, where he, Rick Rubin, and Bruce Headlam interview musicians across a wide range of genres. Gladwell has been included in the Time 100 Most Influential People list and touted as one of Foreign Policy'sTop Global Thinkers. --This text refers to the hardcover edition.

Quill & Quire

Outliers seems, initially, to be an inadvisable pairing of author and subject. Malcolm Gladwell, staff writer for that august cultural magazine, The New Yorker, and author of two exemplary pop-science bestsellers, The Tipping Point and Blink, goes and writes a book on success – thus entering a subgenre whose foul-smelling precincts are overrun with charlatans, profiteers, and New Age fakirs. But, happily for him and us, he’s skirted ignominy by having written not some exhortative how-to guide, but a sober and far-ranging investigation of human achievement that rebuts some received wisdom on the subject. Gladwell begins by arguing that those “self-made” individuals we romanticize, who come from nothing and rise to the pinnacle of their chosen vocations on merit alone, simply don’t exist. Instead, he insists, high achievers “are invariably the beneficiaries of hidden advantages and extraordinary opportunities and cultural legacies” that ultimately determine their status. Moreover, these same people who capitalize on their early good luck work much harder than their rivals; mastery in any calling, apparently, only arrives after 10,000 hours of training and study (a rather less appealing prospect than the wish-yourself-wealthy-and-fabulous strategy promulgated by The Secret). While it’s hardly a revelation that toil and connections and serendipity beget professional reward, Gladwell provides a surfeit of curious, even alarming, examples to prop up his thesis. In the course of his discussion, we learn that 40% of elite hockey players are born between January and March; that off-the-chart geniuses, collectively, accomplish no more in life than their randomly sampled peers; that contentious and irreverent flight crews are less likely to crash planes than deferential ones; that Asian students’ excellence in mathematics owes much to rice-based agriculture. Gladwell’s writing is clear and colloquial throughout, and his chapters are deftly structured, each one introducing new material while simultaneously reiterating and amplifying what came before. But after plowing through the dramatic anecdotes and gee-whiz factoids, adult readers are left to contend with the desolating assertion that the quality of their lives was determined decades ago by ancestral migration patterns or a summertime birthday or skipped piano lessons. In the end, I was yearning for some consoling piffle about, say, dream analysis or Mayan numerology, to convince me, however briefly, that the world could still be mine for the taking. --This text refers to the hardcover edition.

Product details

  • File size : 2748 KB
  • Print length : 321 pages
  • ASIN : B001ANYDAO
  • Publisher : Little, Brown and Company; Illustrated edition (Oct. 29 2008)
  • Word Wise : Enabled
  • Language: : English
  • Text-to-Speech : Enabled
  • Enhanced typesetting : Enabled
  • X-Ray : Not Enabled
  • Customer Reviews:
    4.6 out of 5 stars 10,528 ratings
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4.6 out of 5 stars
4.6 out of 5
10,528 global ratings
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Reviewed in Canada on December 24, 2019
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Reviewed in Canada on January 15, 2020
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Reviewed in Canada on July 18, 2020
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Reviewed in Canada on March 14, 2016
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Reviewed in Canada on November 5, 2015
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Reviewed in Canada on September 24, 2016
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Spectrum314k
1.0 out of 5 stars Journalism and pseudoscience
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on November 12, 2017
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J C Mitchinson
3.0 out of 5 stars Interesting enough but certainly no revelation
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on June 23, 2014
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Stiven Skyrah
5.0 out of 5 stars Salient and grounded
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on March 3, 2018
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tallmanbaby
4.0 out of 5 stars one great read
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on September 10, 2017
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GoldenHen
2.0 out of 5 stars Over-hyped Book with a Lack of Convincing Conclusions
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on August 17, 2014
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