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Download Blink: The Power of Thinking Without Thinking Audiobook (Unabridged)

Extended Audio Sample Blink: The Power of Thinking Without Thinking (Unabridged) Audiobook, by Malcolm Gladwell
3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 3.00 (142,402 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: Malcolm Gladwell Narrator: Malcolm Gladwell Publisher: Hachette Audio Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date: April 2005 ISBN:
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Blink was the second book written by Malcolm Gladwell but, of all his books, it is perhaps the most fascinating because it delves into an idea that isn't explored much, either in psychology or any other field. Gladwell writes that there are certain times when people make up their minds about a certain person, thing or situation within the first couple of seconds of encountering said person, thing or situation. And, contrary to what one may think, their judgment turns out to be sound.

Gladwell gives the example of a firefighter in Cleveland who was leading a group of men to put out a fire in a kitchen. As soon as they entered the kitchen, he felt that something was wrong and ordered his men out. As soon as they vacated the kitchen, the floor collapsed and it turned out that the fire was in the basement and not in the kitchen, as they had previously thought. Another example Gladwell gives is about the Getty kouros, a statue purchased by the Getty Museum, which was initially thought to be genuine, but turned out to be a fake. For some reason, many of the experts who looked at the kouros knew right away that something was off about it. They made a split second decision and it turned out to be correct.

However, there are many times when a person's rapid decision-making process can be at fault. For example, many prejudices against people of certain races or people with certain physical characteristics reveal themselves in the first few moments. Gladwell himself encountered this kind of prejudice when he started growing his hair out long and was mistaken for a rapist and detained by policemen for twenty minutes even though his facial features, his age and his weight were completely different. He also gives the example of CEOs of big companies who usually tend to be tall even though height has nothing to do with their effectiveness at their jobs. It's just that people have a tendency to think better of tall people.

So Blink is partly about learning to trust your first impression about someone or something, but it's also a book that explores what can go wrong in such a scenario. It's a fascinating idea to think that one could accurately gauge a situation without too much information, by just looking at the big picture. Sometimes, you get bogged down in the details and don't pay much attention to things that are staring you in the face.

Malcolm Gladwell is a British-Canadian author who has written four books, all of which were on the New York Times bestseller list. He was born in the UK to a Jamaican mother and a British father and was allowed to roam free at the offices of the University of Waterloo where his father worked. After graduating college, he tried to get a job in advertising and failed, so he started working as a journalist for The American Spectator in Indiana. Later, he moved to The Washington Post and finally, The New Yorker, where he continues to work.

In his landmark best seller The Tipping Point, Malcolm Gladwell redefined how we understand the world around us. Now, in Blink, he revolutionizes the way we understand the world within. Blink is a book about how we think without thinking, about choices that seem to be made in an instant, in the blink of an eye, that actually aren't as simple as they seem. Why are some people brilliant decision makers, while others are consistently inept? Why do some people follow their instincts and win, while others end up stumbling into error? How do our brains really work, in the office, in the classroom, in the kitchen, and in the bedroom? And why are the best decisions often those that are impossible to explain to others?

In Blink we meet the psychologist who has learned to predict whether a marriage will last, based on a few minutes of observing a couple; the tennis coach who knows when a player will double-fault before the racket even makes contact with the ball; the antiquities experts who recognize a fake at a glance. Here, too, are great failures of blink: the election of Warren Harding; New Coke; and the shooting of Amadou Diallo by police. Blink reveals that great decision makers aren't those who process the most information or spend the most time deliberating, but those who have perfected the art of thin-slicing, filtering the very few factors that matter from an overwhelming number of variables.

Drawing on cutting-edge neuroscience and psychology and displaying all of the brilliance that made The Tipping Point a classic, Blink changes the way you understand every decision you make. Never again will you think about thinking the same way. Download and start listening now!

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Listener Opinions

  • 1 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 5 Shinn Chen | 2/15/2014

    " This is one of the most asinine books I've ever read. Seriously, the entire thesis is "sometimes people make snap decisions and these may be more effective than a conducting a drawn out analysis." OK, maybe this is an interesting topic for a 4 page long form in Wired or something, but as a book, it completely fails. Malcolm Gladwell can stuff the book chock full of marginally relevant anecdotes and cherry picked studies but nothing is going to cover up the utter inanity of the thesis. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Leah | 2/14/2014

    " Take a visual, aural, or other sensory "thin slice" of what's happening around you, within you, or in proximity to someone else, instead of digging into a deep history or obsessively evaluating every angle possible in multiple ways for an example of implicit, unconscious, rapid cognition or snap judgments that help make decisions in a 20-second (or less then) "blink." Malcolm Gladwell's famous book about "The Power of Thinking Without Thinking" includes case studies related to police practice, medical protocol, choosing and hiring symphony orchestra musicians, and a few more. It's a little long on detail and a little thicker than necessary, yet provides that helpful nudge most of us need to get back to trusting our own instincts and initial gut reactions to decisions about our own futures, people we've just met, large /small purchase decisions and anything else that presents us with either / or, one of many choices. Now that I've finished reading "blink," I need to add Gladwell's "The Tipping Point: How Little Things Can Make a Big Difference" to my reading list. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Peter Mackie | 2/12/2014

    " This book is part of the curatorial movement that is so prevalent on the internet. The book is a good quick read, that combines the 'that's amazing' factor with the illusion that you discovering some new unthought of theory. But I suspect that the disparate and select research is merely cobbled together to support a tenuous theory. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Sharolyn Griffith | 2/5/2014

    " I listened to this on a long drive this weekend. It emphasizes how our snap judgments can both help and inhibit us, what can make us be able to make better judgments and vice versa, and so on. My favorite line? When he was talking about the power to read people's facial expressions to basically mind read, and he quoted someone he interviewed about Clinton before he became President. Basically, Clinton had the, "I've got my hand in the cookie jar, love me because I'm a rascal" look. I laughed out loud. I want to be able to read minds. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Christy Valyou | 2/1/2014

    " While I loved parts of this book, it just doesn't compare to Gladwell's later book, Outliers, which was one of my all time favorites! You might consider skipping this one & picking up Outliers instead. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Gem | 1/24/2014

    " As someone who is interested in psychology I snapped this up when I saw it in a charity shop, I found it to be very interesting, and also very useful for day to day life, giving you an insight into how people can know things at first glance and how some people take longer to recognize things. This is the type of book that I will definitely keep and read again. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Chris Reid | 1/18/2014

    " I think I've read the three books he's known for randomly. This, as the others, worked for me, as it makes me see things a bit differently. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Shetal | 1/17/2014

    " I love everything this author has written "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Bridget Lawson | 1/7/2014

    " I could not stop gabbing about all the cool bits of info in this book while reading this book. This book effectively points out the things that are all around you, yet you have never noticed. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Mazen Loujami | 1/2/2014

    " Interesting book on some psychological aspects of our dayly life, but a little bit superficial. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Ana | 12/21/2013

    " Malcolm Gladwell turns stats about our lives, thought patterns, and decisions making process into a whole new world of awareness...are you really thinking what you thought you felt? "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Claudio Miranda | 12/7/2013

    " very good about the inner details of quick thinking. However in some parts give too much details about university research and data. Worth to read, I recommend. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Scott Whiting | 10/25/2013

    " Here is why you can trust your first impressions. Made me go out and buy his other books. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Christine Upton | 7/29/2013

    " This worth a read. Why people choose a decision in tough, important situations is a fascinating topic. I am glad I read this book. I guess it won't help me make such decisions, but it can help look back and analyze why I did what I did. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Patti | 6/18/2013

    " I've read this book several times - am currently reading it with my students - and it amazes me every time. Our minds are truly fascinating. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Lindsey Young | 5/15/2013

    " pretty good, for a book on psychology :P "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Sonia | 3/13/2013

    " The book is quite astounding, it makes you realize the importance of your subconscious and the marvels it can do to you. I enjoyed every single 'sip' of it. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Vimi | 2/24/2013

    " The books provides insight into the functioning of the mind while making snap judgements. Concepts like 'adaptive unconscious', 'implicit association' are reinforced throughout the book. Elucidated with examples throughout on every page, its a easy breezy read! "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Kiera | 2/21/2013

    " not as good as his other book, which was slightly more interesting since they were very identical "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Leonil Carreon | 10/10/2012

    " Trivial things decided that gave tremendous impact to lives. Very very interesting! "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 noseinbookC | 3/14/2012

    " I would recommend this over "Outliers" by same author. It's more interesting and the supporting arguments made more sense. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Mercedes Rodriguez-sanday | 12/15/2011

    " Impressive insight into the power and accuracy of first, split-second impressions. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Dev | 5/25/2011

    " An interesting if brief dip in and around behavioural psychology "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Hallie | 5/24/2011

    " My favorite Malcolm Gladwell book! Definitely does not disappoint! "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Michelle | 5/24/2011

    " Knew the subconscious was powerful but didn't realize how it worked... present tense only etc... and how it is linked to our survival instincts. And also very interesting about how it controls our prejudices. Has made me want to read more on this subject... "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Mshodes | 5/22/2011

    " This was the first Malcolm Gladwell book I read and I was hooked from the first few pages in an airport gift shop. I love learning about how our instincts work and the way society influences our gut reactions, sometimes for the worse. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Rachel | 5/19/2011

    " This was a fascinating book discussing factors that contribute to our first impressions and how we can train ourselves to make more accurate impressions. I enjoyed it and it was fun to think about and discuss. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Elize | 5/18/2011

    " loved the real world examples given and insight into the mind. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Eric | 5/18/2011

    " Not sure if it was just over my head or if it was some gobbldy-gook. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 J | 5/18/2011

    " the thing about malcolm gladwell is he always thinks he's right. no room for any other interpretation. also, this book felt a little...wandering. i felt like he started out trying to make a point, but halfway through he stopped trying. but interesting stuff, and accessible as always. "

  • 1 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 5 Madina | 5/18/2011

    " I felt like Malcolm Gladwell was dragging out this book to make it a book. He took one idea, a very good one, about gut instinct, and built a whole book around it. Chapter after chapter, I kept thinking "But I just read this in the previous chapter!" "

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About the Author
Author Malcolm Gladwell

Malcolm Gladwell has been a staff writer with the New Yorker since 1996. He is a former writer at the Washington Post and served as the newspaper’s New York City bureau chief. He has won a National Magazine Award, and in 2005 he was named one of Time magazine’s 100 Most Influential People. He is the author of four books: The Tipping Point: How Little Things Make a Big Difference, Blink: The Power of Thinking without Thinking, and Outliers: The Story of Success, all of which were #1 New York Times bestsellers. His book What the Dog Saw is a compilation of stories published in the New Yorker. Gladwell graduated from the University of Toronto, Trinity College, with a degree in history. He was born in England, grew up in rural Ontario, and now lives in New York City.