Sunday, July 5, 2009

NOTES: Blink by Malcolm Gladwell

Blink: The Power of Thinking without Thinking (New York: , 2004)**

p. 41: "She never looked at me as a whole person…." (patient re: M.D.)

p. 45: "…to make somebody laugh, you have to be interesting, and in order to be interesting, you have to do things that are mean. Comedy comes out of anger, and interesting comes out of angry; otherwise there is no conflict."

p. 68: "He thinks he's moving it at impact, but he's actually not moving it until long after impact." (Braden on tennis)

p. 70: We learn by example and by direct experience because there are real limits to the adequacy of verbal instruction."
[cf. Melser, imitation, apophaticism, etc.]

p. 76: The Warren Harding error is the dark side of rapid cognition."

p. 81: IAT,

p. 87: …being short is probably as much of a handicap to corporate success as being a woman or an African American.

p. 90: "Even if things are horrendous at home, you give the customer your best." (Golomb)

p. 114: "…spontaneity isn't random."
[Freedom isn't undisciplined.]

p. 118: "…we would be in command but out of control." (Van Riper)
[subofficers never got specific commands. "Just the intent." God, teleology, impetus, secondary causation, etc.]

p. 119: "verbal overshadowing", cf. Jonathan W. Schooler

p. 120: …when it comes to faces, we are an awful lot better at visual recognition than we are at verbal description.
[apophaticism, positivism, physicalism, reductionism, etc.]

p. 125: "They were so focused on the mechanics and the process that they never looked at the problem holistically. In the act of tearing something apart, you lose its meaning." (Van Riper)

p. 137: What screws up doctors when they are trying to predict heart attacks is that they take too much information into account."

p. 139: "As they [i.e., a panel of psychologists] received more info [about a psychological subject], their certainty about their own decisions became entirely out of proportion to the actual correctness of those decisions." (Oskamp)

p. 169: "We [in the USA] have this fixation on softness. I always think of that glove that Disney put on Mickey Mouse's hand. If we saw his real claw, no one would have liked him."

p. 172: the Aeron chair?

p. 176: We like market research because it provides certainty…; if someone asks us why we made the decision we did, we can point to a number. But the truth is that for the most important decisions, there can be no certainty."

p. 184: Whenever we have something that we are good at… that experience and passion fundamentally change the nature of our first impressions. This does not mean that when we are outside out areas of of passion and experience, our reactions are invariably wrong. It just means they are shallow."

p. 189: Soundview, NYC, a good/cheap place for poor NYC-n00bs

p. 200: Kukukuku tribe: savage ritual pederasts
cf. Jerome Kagan, Three Sedutive Ideas

p. 204: Elvan Tomkins; Ekman and Friesen, FACS

p. 206: "In a certain sense, it [our face] is what is going on inside our mind."
[cf. Melser]

p. "…you instantaneously inhabit the mind of the person doing the pointing. You need to read the mind of the pointer, and, of course, people with autism can't read minds." (Ami Klin)

p. 218: In anything less than a perfectly literal environment, the autistic person is lost.

p. 219: Schultz, autistic people used their inferior temporal gyrus for both objects and people (as opposed to the fusiform gyrus for the latter)

p. 219: "He [an autistic patient] never looked up at people's faces. When he had any dealings with persons at all, he treated them, or rather parts of them, as if they were objects."
[failure to backtrack actions to their agent-source]

p. 220: "…if people don't anchor meaning for you, then you seek something that does." (Ami Klin)

p. 227: speeds ––> anxiety; astronomical consciousness ––> anthropic angst

p. 229: He [an autistic subject] didn't see individuals, with their own emotions and thoughts. He saw a collection of inanimate objects in the room and constructed a system to explain them––a system… [interpreted with] rigid and impoverished logic….

p. 232: I think that we become temporarily autistic also in situations when we run out of time [or, "white space"].

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