From the best-selling author of The Black Swan and one of the foremost thinkers of our time, Nassim Nicholas Taleb, a book on how some things actually benefit from disorder.
In The Black Swan Taleb outlined a problem, and in Antifragile he offers a definitive solution: how to gain from disorder and chaos while being protected from fragilities and adverse events. For what Taleb calls the "antifragile" is actually beyond the robust, because it benefits from shocks, uncertainty, and stressors, just as human bones get stronger when subjected to stress and tension. The antifragile needs disorder in order to survive and flourish.
Taleb stands uncertainty on its head, making it desirable, even necessary, and proposes that things be built in an antifragile manner. The antifragile is immune to prediction errors. Why is the city-state better than the nation-state, why is debt bad for you, and why is everything that is both modern and complicated bound to fail? The audiobook spans innovation by trial and error, health, biology, medicine, life decisions, politics, foreign policy, urban planning, war, personal finance, and economic systems. And throughout, in addition to the street wisdom of Fat Tony of Brooklyn, the voices and recipes of ancient wisdom, from Roman, Greek, Semitic, and medieval sources, are heard loud and clear.
Extremely ambitious and multidisciplinary, Antifragile provides a blueprint for how to behave - and thrive - in a world we don't understand, and which is too uncertain for us to even try to understand and predict. Erudite and witty, Taleb’s message is revolutionary: What is not antifragile will surely perish.
©2012 Nassim Nicholas Taleb (P)2012 Random House Audio
"[This] is the lesson of Taleb...and also the lesson of our volatile times. There is more courage and heroism in defying the human impulse, in taking the purposeful and painful steps to prepare for the unimaginable." (Malcolm Gladwell, author of The Tipping Point)
"[Taleb writes] in a style that owes as much to Stephen Colbert as it does to Michel de Montaigne." (The Wall Street Journal)
"The most prophetic voice of all.... [Taleb is] a genuinely significant philosopher...someone who is able to change the way we view the structure of the world through the strength, originality and veracity of his ideas alone." (GQ)
While I am unsure that the author would characterize this as a work of philosophy, I find it a foundational work of deep thoughtfulness that would make philosophy a practical art. Mr. Taleb's understanding of history and commerce are astounding. The definition of "antifragility" is so practical and workable that one wonders why it has not been talked about before. Fortunately, the author offers an answer. His excoriation of my profession, medicine, is incisive, factual and consistent with my 30 year observation of the industry primarily involved in the production of sickness, having an abhorrence of caring for health. Worth the time.
WARNING this book is highly intellectual and comprehensively challenging, if nuanced and detailed explanations bore you, this book is not for you.
the thinking is highly rigorous and if you yourself are not a very rigorous thinker, you probably won't enjoy this book very much.
a lot of people complain about the author being arrogant. the fact of the matter is nassim taleb is a very talented thinker and blows most modern day writers out of the water. He's confident about his correctness because he is often correct, just accept it. if you don't approach this book from a position of humility with a readiness to be challenged, you will probably hate it.
I honestly feel that my life and way of thinking has been altered by this book. of course I don't agree with everything nassim taleb says in this book and that's kinda the point. I think it would be a point of pride for the author to know that his book inspires critical thought.
20 minute drive twice a day. What better than listening to awesome books while driving?
"Maybe I've got more experience on my side now, but there are many things I disagree with in this book."
I loved the Black Swan and forth by randomness… Somehow this book got me disagreeing pretty often. Which is not really a problem, as it's got me to think about some things I had taken for granted. Still nothing has got pretty one-sided story on many things, which he's got a right to.
All in all, Nassim, agree to disagree!
This is a great book and I would recommend it to anyone. My only problem was the censoring of words throughout the work. The spectacular inappropriateness of this just amazing. This is not a young adult novel nor is audible a publicly open platform. The idea that audible would modify what is essentially a scientific and philosophical work is absolutely repugnant. This was the only issue I had with this audio book. If you can find an uncensored version of the work, I would highly recommend buying it instead.
Something I really love about audio books is that the actor can help you understand the tone of the author, their intent. Joe Ochman does a great job of communicating the author's general disdain of, well, academes and people that disagree with him. Yuck. I can't even get thru the first hour.
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