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Thinking, Fast and Slow Hardcover – Nov 1 2011

4.5 out of 5 stars 82 customer reviews

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Harry Potter and the Cursed Child
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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 512 pages
  • Publisher: Doubleday Canada; Second Edition edition (Nov. 1 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0385676514
  • ISBN-13: 978-0385676519
  • Product Dimensions: 16 x 3.7 x 23.5 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 726 g
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars 82 customer reviews
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #50,845 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Review

A New York Times Book Review Best Book
A Globe and Mail Best Book

“I will never think about thinking quite the same. [Thinking, Fast and Slow] is a monumental achievement.”
—Roger Lowenstein, Bloomberg/Businessweek

“Profound . . . As Copernicus removed the Earth from the centre of the universe and Darwin knocked humans off their biological perch, Mr. Kahneman has shown that we are not the paragons of reason we assume ourselves to be.”
The Economist
 
“[Kahneman’s] disarmingly simple experiments have profoundly changed the way that we think about thinking . . . We like to see ourselves as a Promethean species, uniquely endowed with the gift of reason. But Mr. Kahneman’s simple experiments reveal a very different mind, stuffed full of habits that, in most situations, lead us astray.”
—Jonah Lehrer, The Wall Street Journal
 
“[A] tour de force of psychological insight, research explication and compelling narrative that brings together in one volume the high points of Mr. Kahneman's notable contributions, over five decades, to the study of human judgment, decision-making and choice . . . Thanks to the elegance and force of his ideas, and the robustness of the evidence he offers for them, he has helped us to a new understanding of our divided minds—and our whole selves.”
—Christoper F. Chabris, The Wall Street Journal
 
“The ramifications of Kahenman’s work are wide, extending into education, business, marketing, politics . . . and even happiness research. Call his field “psychonomics,” the hidden reasoning behind our choices. Thinking, Fast and Slow is essential reading for anyone with a mind.”
—Kyle Smith, The New York Post
 
“A major intellectual event . . . The work of Kahneman and Tversky was a crucial pivot point in the way we see ourselves.”
—David Brooks, The New York Times; Author of The Social Animal
 
“Kahneman provides a detailed, yet accessible, description of the psychological mechanisms involved in making decisions.”
—Jacek Debiec, Nature
 
“With Kahneman’s expert help, readers may understand this mix of psychology and economics better than most accountants, therapists, or elected representatives. VERDICT: A stellar accomplishment, a book for everyone who likes to think and wants to do it better.”
Library Journal

“Kahneman’s extraordinary contribution to humanity’s cerebral growth [has] reached the mainstream—in the best way possible.”
The Atlantic
 
Thinking, Fast and Slow is a magisterial work, stunning in its ambition, infused with knowledge, laced with wisdom, informed by modesty and deeply humane. If you can read only one book this year, read this one.”
The Globe and Mail
 
“[In Thinking, Fast and Slow] We learn why we mistake statistical noise for coherent patterns; why the stock-picking of well-paid investment advisers and the prognostications of pundits are worthless; why businessmen tend to be both absurdly overconfident and unwisely risk-averse; and why memory affects decision making in counterintuitive ways. Kahneman's primer adds to recent challenges to economic orthodoxies about rational actors and efficient markets; more than that, it's a lucid, marvelously readable guide to spotting--and correcting--our biased misunderstandings of the world.”
Publishers' Weekly (starred review)

“For anyone interested in economics, cognitive science, psychology, and, in short, human behavior, this is the book of the year. Before Malcolm Gladwell and Freakonomics, there was Daniel Kahneman who invented the field of behavior economics, won a Nobel…and now explains how we think and make choices. Here’s an easy choice: read this.”
The Daily Beast

“The author of several scholarly texts, Kahneman now offers general readers not just the findings of psychological research but also a better understanding of how research questions arise and how scholars systematically frame and answer them. . . . Gripping. Striking research showing the immense complexity of ordinary thought and revealing the identities of the gatekeepers in our minds.”
Kirkus Reviews (starred review)

“Kahneman’s Thinking, Fast and Slow deals with the very nature of thought, and it just may be the most important book I’ve read in many years. . .”
Los Angeles Review of Books


“This book is one of the few that must be counted as mandatory reading for anyone interested in the Internet, even though it doesn’t claim to be about that. Before computer networking got cheap and ubiquitous, the sheer inefficiency of communication dampened the effects of the quirks of human psychology on macro scale events. No more. We must now confront how we really are in order to make sense of our world and not screw it up. Daniel Kahneman has discovered a path to make it possible.”
—Jaron Lanier, author of You Are Not a Gadget

“Daniel Kahneman is one of the most original and interesting thinkers of our time. There may be no other person on the planet who better understands how and why we make the choices we make. In this absolutely amazing book, he shares a lifetime’s worth of wisdom presented in a manner that is simple and engaging, but nonetheless stunningly profound. This book is a must read for anyone with a curious mind.”
—Steven D. Levitt, William B. Ogden Distinguished Service Professor of Economics at the University of Chicago; co-author of Freakonomics and SuperFreakonomics.

Thinking, Fast and Slow is a masterpiece—a brilliant and engaging intellectual saga by one of the greatest psychologists and deepest thinkers of our time. Kahneman should be parking a Pulitzer next to his Nobel Prize.”
—Daniel Gilbert, Harvard University Professor of Psychology, author of Stumbling on Happiness, host of the award-winning PBS television series “This Emotional Life”

“This book is a tour de force by an intellectual giant; it is readable, wise, and deep. Buy it fast. Read it slowly and repeatedly. It will change the way you think, on the job, about the world, and in your own life.”
—Richard Thaler, University of Chicago Professor of Economics and co-author of Nudge

“This is a landmark book in social thought, in the same league as The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith and The Interpretation of Dreams by Sigmund Freud.
—Nassim Taleb, author of The Black Swan

“Daniel Kahneman is among the most influential psychologists in history and certainly the most important psychologist alive today. He has a gift for uncovering remarkable features of the human mind, many of which have become textbook classics and part of the conventional wisdom. His work has reshaped social psychology, cognitive science, the study of reason and of happiness, and behavioral economics, a field that he and his collaborator Amos Tversky helped to launch. The appearance of Thinking, Fast and Slow is a major event.”
—Steven Pinker, Harvard College Professor of Psychology, Harvard University, and author of How the Mind Works and The Better Angels of our Nature

About the Author

DANIEL KAHNEMAN is Eugene Higgins Professor of Psychology Emeritus at Princeton University and a professor of public affairs at the Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs. He is the only non-economist to have won the Nobel Prize in Economic Sciences; it was awarded to him in 2002 for his pioneering work with Amos Tversky on decision-making.


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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I have to admit that I wasn't really aware of Kahneman's work before I bought this book. Back in 2002, I was shocked to hear that there was a Nobel prize in Economics given out for someone showing that humans aren't rational investors. "Duh" I thought. Psychologists have known that for decades. Well, it turns out the guy who won that Nobel prize was a psychologist- Kahneman.

This book, written at the end (or just about) of his career, is a reflection back on a life's worth of research. Part biography (including his research partner Amos Tversky), part lecture, part research book, it makes for a good read. The chapters are all short, focused, and aimed at a broad audience yet contain some data for researchers. They also end with two or three quotes that illustrate the point of the chapter. Time and again, we're hit over the head with the difference between System 1 of the mind (unconscious, intuitive, biased, fast) versus System 2 (conscious, logical, lazy, slow). In a nutshell, most people believe that System 2 dominates our thoughts and behaviors. Kahneman goes to great lengths to show that this is often not the case.

Taking a broadly evolutionary perspective, he views System 1 as a background integrator of data that's concerned with survival-level issues. It often steers the thinking of System 2, which is costly and thus lazy. System 1 works well enough often enough for System 2 to only really kick in under consciously important circumstances. Certainly, psychology has revealed dozens of ways in which our unconscious mind can exert shockingly large influences on our behavior in contrast to our conscious perceptions and ideas. That's hardly surprising, and in that regard, I found the book a little stale and repetitive.
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Format: Hardcover
Investors are often criticized for making irrational decisions, as if it were possible through hard work and discipline to reach some kind of idealized rational state. According to psychologist and Nobel laureate Daniel Kahneman, author of Thinking, Fast and Slow, it doesn't quite work that way. People can be trained to make more thoughtful decisions but, ultimately, the anatomical structure and evolutionary history of the human brain calls the shots. And that brain tells us to make quick, intuitive judgments with identifiable biases. Our more reflective processes, more often than not, line up to support these judgments.
If this sounds familiar, it should. In 2005, Malcolm Gladwell published the bestseller Blink: The Power of Thinking Without Thinking. Gladwell wrote detailed case studies about intuitive judgments. On rare occasions, such as the case of a chess master with several thousand hours of training, intuitions can be remarkably accurate. At other times, when we use physical traits like a square jaw to judge a politician's leadership capabilities, they are just plain dumb.
But, Thinking, Fast and Slow is a much richer book than Blink. Kahneman has written the organized, referenced big brother of Blink and other books like Freakonomics by Steven Levitt and Stephen Dubner and Moneyball by Michael Lewis. All of these titles owe their existence to the intellectual framework developed by Kahneman and others.
The author, who has spent five decades studying the way we make decisions, is seen as a pioneer in the field of behavioural finance. He was the first psychologist to be awarded the Nobel Memorial Prize in Economics for his co-authorship, with Amos Tversky, of Prospect Theory.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I like it! I enjoy the long handle and the grip, it doesn't slip. I'd you have never used a safety razor, your will nick your face the first few times until your skin and you adjust to the razor. I have a short razor as well and the long handle and weight provide easier manoeuvrability. Get different razor blades. I bought the Astra razors 100 pack. You end up saving lots of money
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Format: Hardcover
This book is important reading for anyone who considers themselves to be entirely rational. If you think that you make decisions based on careful and reasoned thinking, you need to think again. Kahneman has alerted us to the entirely human sport of jumping to conclusions and then hanging onto them in the face of the evidence. Apart from being a compendium of his extensive research it is well written for the lay reader. Great reading!
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Why are people not the perfectly rational decision makers (called “Econs”) that standard economics assumes them to be? This book gives us some insight into how the brain works to help answer this question. Unfortunately the goal seems to be limited to helping us become better Econs rather than a deeper understanding of why we think the way we do.

His world seems rather insular, as he interacts mainly with academics like himself, his students, or stockbrokers. He loves to show how trained professionals make irrational choices in their field of expertise. It would be nice to get more insight about the irrational choices the rest of us make. Although he is careful to use gender inclusive language, one gets the impression he has never met an actual woman. For whatever reason, women seem to use their intuitive faculties differently, and one might think that difference would be worth exploring.

Lets Answer an Easier Question Instead
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One interesting fallacy he identifies is the tendency to answer a question by substituting an easier question. While we think of politicians doing this deliberately, we do it all the time unconsciously. A typical question (in this book) would be “Should I buy stock in Mercedes Benz?” which gets replaced with “Do I like their cars?” Of course, the quality of the cars is already taken into account in the stock price, which may be overvalued because too many people like the name.

Substituting an easier question seems to be the theme of the psychological experiments the book is largely based on. It is so much easier to ask questions about money than investigate how beliefs form and how they affect the thinking process.
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