The author of the best-selling You Are Not So Smart shares more discoveries about self-delusion and irrational thinking, and gives readers a fighting chance at outsmarting their not-so-smart brains.
David McRaney's first book, You Are Not So Smart, evolved from his wildly popular blog of the same name. A mix of popular psychology and trivia, McRaney's insights have struck a chord with thousands, and his blog - and now podcasts and videos - have become an Internet phenomenon. Like You Are Not So Smart, You Are Now Less Dumb is grounded in the idea that we all believe ourselves to be objective observers of reality - except we're not. But that's okay, because our delusions keep us sane.
Expanding on this premise, McRaney provides eye-opening analyses of 15 more ways we fool ourselves every day. McRaney also reveals the true price of happiness, why Benjamin Franklin was such a badass, and how to avoid falling for our own lies. This smart and highly entertaining audiobook will be wowing listeners for years to come.
©2013 David McRaney (P)2013 Gildan Media LLC
"You are Now Less Dumb" is a perfect title for this book - not because I believe that the book makes you any smarter, but rather because this is exactly what I think the author would smugly say to you after telling you that the "love" you feel for your parents is really a survival instinct.
This book presents a miriad of different psychology theories in a well written an entertaining way. It is intended to show you all the ways our brains trick us, and that all of our actions and emotions can be explained.
The problem I have with this book is not with the writing - it is excellent. Overall it was pretty entertaining, but I did find it hard to listen to in long chunks because the material all started to sound the same ( In fact, I'll be lucky to remember a quarter of what I listened to). Rather, my problem with the book is that in the end it seemed to push the following messages:
1. we essentially have no free will
2. we are essentially animals and all of our behaviors come from evolution
3.. The world we live in is devoid of mystery, and by mystery I mean anything that can't be explained using the evolution and modern psycological science
Regarding #3 - how do we know that psycological science of today won't be debunked 100 years from now? For example, Freud is largely seen as a weirdo now, but at the time he had all the answers?
Anyway, I guess what I am saying is that the book came off a little smug. Also I don't feel any less dumb.
Make it Simple
After a few chapters of this horrendous narrator's ear shredding sibilance, I couldn't care less what this book was about. A total waste of a credit and a total shame; the content is worth listening to if you don't care about the longevity of your hearing. After a while, I was no longer able to concentrate of the content; I found myself cringing in anticipation of another wince-inducing string of cerebrum-slicing sibilant sssssss's. Ugh.
Sound quality is a huge problem with Audible's products and the reason why I'll be ditching my account.
If you have never read/listened to earlier books involving the human mind and the way we trick ourselves (Michael Shermer comes to mind) then much of the information would seem new and intriguing. Unfortunately since I've read other books, this had literally no new information for me.
The narrator's tone and approach simply did not match the content.
I expected a fresh take on some of the topics, however this was not the case. Even the examples provided were ones already presented in other books by other authors. While I know that the concepts will be similar since they are well-known and documented, I expected to get a different perspective. Instead it was a re-hash and left me wishing I had my credit back.
The book itself is very interesting. I would change nothing regarding the content.
I truly enjoyed learning about the psyche and psychological studies to help the listener/reader understand the premise behind how the human brain has evolved to act and understand things.
The narrator has a voice like Droopy Dog - very hard to follow along unless concentrating very well. A more lively narrator would make this book extremely more enjoyable.
It was a good book, don't get be wrong. I just found myself rewinding quite a bit because I would get extremely bored with the narrator.
Artist that loves all things creative.
I love these books by David McRaney. The perspective, and studies are really interesting for a peak into the human condition.
I try to listen to this every few weeks/months just to remind myself of some of the self deception and little quirks about being human. It's incredibly informative, and provides lots of information that can be research online to find out more on the topics. It's also incredibly funny and lots of fun to listen to.
Think you're in control of the things you think and feel? Wrong. Your brain tells you what to think and feel. Millions of years of evolution are behind your every desire and descretion.
David McRaney uses excellent, and sometimes unexpected humor combined with a summary of some of the most fascinating behavioral psychology to hammer home how to be less dumb as you go though life tightly swaddled in your own biases.
Don Hagen is the perfect narrator for this book. his charming-old-man voice provides just the right combination of wisdom and whit to ensure that you will listen to these chapters again and again!
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