With unequaled insight and brio, David Brooks, the New York Times columnist and best-selling author of Bobos in Paradise, has long explored and explained the way we live. Now, with the intellectual curiosity and emotional wisdom that make his columns among the most read in the nation, Brooks turns to the building blocks of human flourishing in a multilayered, profoundly illuminating work grounded in everyday life.
This is the story of how success happens. It is told through the lives of one composite American couple, Harold and Erica - how they grow, push forward, are pulled back, fail, and succeed. Distilling a vast array of information into these two vividly realized characters, Brooks illustrates a fundamental new understanding of human nature. A scientific revolution has occurred - we have learned more about the human brain in the last 30 years than we had in the previous 3,000.
The unconscious mind, it turns out, is most of the mind - not a dark, vestigial place but a creative and enchanted one, where most of the brain's work gets done. This is the realm of emotions, intuitions, biases, longings, genetic predispositions, personality traits, and social norms: the realm where character is formed and where our most important life decisions are made. The natural habitat of The Social Animal.
Drawing on a wealth of current research from numerous disciplines, Brooks takes Harold and Erica from infancy to school; from the "odyssey years" that have come to define young adulthood to the high walls of poverty; from the nature of attachment, love, and commitment, to the nature of effective leadership. He reveals the deeply social aspect of our very minds and exposes the bias in modern culture that overemphasizes rationalism, individualism, and IQ. Along the way, he demolishes conventional definitions of success while looking toward a culture based on trust and humility.
©2011 David Brooks (P)2011 Random House Audio
"An uncommonly brilliant blend of sociology, intellect and allegory." (Kirkus)
A peek into the reasons why we do what we do throughout our dynamic lives.
Some excellent material gathering on the essential truths about people and human behavior. Possibly overlooked, but one element of human behavior is that listening commuters tend to nod off to a soporific voice. I can only hope all the good stuff in the book went straight to my unconscious while waiting for the lights to turn green.
This is a book that forces you to search your soul for your meaning in life. Based on well researched scientific studies David Brooks opens your eyes to the complexities of ourselves.
The storyline was well developed and usually successful. I truly appreciated the efforts and skills of the author and narrator. I strongly recommend this read for anyone who enjoys reality with a twist of research.
I've been looking for this book for a few years and once i bought it, I decided to listen to it rather than to read it.
It turned out to be a wonderful experience for my first book.
Arthur read it very well and convincing. This was a blast, and the book, both due to the narrator and the story, are an absolute must.
I really liked it. One of the few books I lamented when it finished. I wanted to go on and on.
Very good insights and a storyline that helps understand the concepts presented. I even bought a hardcopy version to present my father!
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