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The Philosophical Baby: What Children's Minds Tell Us About Truth, Love and the Meaning of Life | [Alison Gopnik]

The Philosophical Baby: What Children's Minds Tell Us About Truth, Love and the Meaning of Life

In the last decade there has been a revolution in our understanding of the minds of infants and young children. We used to believe that babies were irrational, and that their thinking and experience were limited. Now Alison Gopnik - a leading psychologist and philosopher, as well as a mother - explains the cutting-edge scientific and psychological research that has revealed that babies learn more, create more, care more, and experience more than we could ever have imagined.
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Publisher's Summary

How do babies think? What is it like to be a baby? How much do our experiences as children shape our adult lives? In the last decade, there has been a revolution in our understanding of the minds of infants and young children. We used to believe that babies were irrational, and that their thinking and experience were limited. Now Alison Gopnik - a leading psychologist and philosopher, as well as a mother - explains the cutting-edge scientific and psychological research that has revealed that babies learn more, create more, care more, and experience more than we could ever have imagined. And there is good reason to believe that babies are actually smarter, more thoughtful, and more conscious than adults

This new science holds answers to some of the deepest and oldest questions about what it means to be human. A new baby's captivated gaze at her mother's face lays the foundations for love and morality. A toddler's unstoppable explorations of his playpen hold the key to scientific discovery. A three-year-old's wild make-believe explains how we can imagine the future, write novels, and invent new technologies.

Alison Gopnik - a leading psychologist and philosopher, as well as a mother - explains the groundbreaking new psychological, neuroscientific, and philosophical developments in our understanding of very young children, transforming our understanding of how babies see the world, and in turn promoting a deeper appreciation for the role of parents.

©2009 Alison Gopnik; (P)2009 Audible, Inc.

What the Critics Say

"One of the most prominent researchers in the field, Gopnik is also one of the finest writers, with a special gift for relating scientific research to the questions that parents and others most want answered. This is where to go if you want to get into the head of a baby." (Slate.com)
"Her pages are packed with provocative observations and cunning insights. I'd highly recommend this fascinating book to any parent of a young child - and, indeed, anyone who has ever been a baby." (The Guardian)

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

3.6 (81 )
5 star
 (22)
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3.6 (36 )
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3.5 (37 )
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3 star
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2 star
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1 star
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Performance
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  •  
    Keiko CHARLOTTE, NC, United States 07-16-12
    Keiko CHARLOTTE, NC, United States 07-16-12 Member Since 2011
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Don't bother"
    Would you say that listening to this book was time well-spent? Why or why not?

    Narrator was annoying and I found myself zoning out. Should have gotten another book.


    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Nancy Deschenes 04-29-12 Member Since 2010
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    "See the world like a child"

    What is it like to be a child? how do children look at the world?

    A very good read for any parent or anyone who takes care of children. It helps us understand how children think, and why it's sometimes so hard to make them understand. It will change how you look at your children. It will also encourage you to look at the world differently, to see what we don't see anymore, because we're too grownup for that.

    Well researched, and scientifically based; this is not a touchy-feel-y how-to-bring-up-kids book. As a matter of fact, it will likely leave you with more questions than answers, but it will make you notice all that goes on in their little heads.

    It is also an interesting read for those trying to find out how their own minds work, particularly the more intuitive, less organized side.

    The narration is a little over-done, and can be distracting at times.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Julie Beverly Hills, CA, USA 05-17-10
    Julie Beverly Hills, CA, USA 05-17-10
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Good info, annoying narrator"

    As much as I admire Alison Gopnik, I was unable to listen to this because of the narrator's constant use of upspeak? I don't know if this is how she really talks or she adopted it for this project only but either way, it ruined an otherwise terrific book.

    4 of 6 people found this review helpful
  •  
    LizandRodion Washington, DC, United States 01-08-13
    LizandRodion Washington, DC, United States 01-08-13 Member Since 2011
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    "Literally Un-Listenable"

    This book has the worst narration ever. It was so grating and monotonous I could not listen to the book. Awful.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    LadyShopper 08-06-12
    LadyShopper 08-06-12 Member Since 2012
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    "A book for everyone - new or future parents moreso"
    Where does The Philosophical Baby rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

    middle


    What was the most compelling aspect of this narrative?

    The scientific details are so artfully integrated with the text on the whole, that it is very easy to stay with.


    Which character – as performed by Elisabeth Rodgers – was your favorite?

    It is not a book with Characters, but the telling of the workings of a baby's mind, from many points of view.


    What insight do you think you’ll apply from The Philosophical Baby?

    The bits of miracle in it can make the epiphany for new or future parents - it shares so many wonderful insights, and at the end of the book , the reader will have a fresh and appreciative and more sensitive way with babies - theirs or anyone's .


    Any additional comments?

    I gave it all those stars because it is valuable. All should read it. I am sharing it with the youngsters and read it myself because I am finally going to be a grandmother and, although I worked with children when mine were growing up , they are the typical later-in-life parents and I really forgot some of the senses that should help me be a fine grandparent. I liked the book. It was easy and not popish.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Anne Kingwood, TX, United States 04-23-11
    Anne Kingwood, TX, United States 04-23-11 Member Since 2008
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    "Hard to stay engaged due to narrator"

    I really can't evaluate the content of this book because the narrator makes it so difficult to listen and stay engaged. When I sped the book up to 1.5 speed instead of normal speed it was better, but slightly distorted. I finally gave up, which is a shame because I think there may have been some worthwhile content. Be sure to listen to a sample before you buy. If you're really into the subject matter, you might be able to make it through.

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Donald Braman Los Angeles, CA 02-26-11
    Donald Braman Los Angeles, CA 02-26-11 Member Since 2008

    thinkingitover

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "strangely affected reading ..."

    ... but a good book. It's a bit dated now, but it's nice to hear about this research.

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
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