Book Report: Blink

Malcom Gladwell's BlinkI just finished reading Malcom Gladwell‘s Blink, currently number one on the New York Times bestsellers nonfiction list. Gladwell’s previous book, The Tipping Point, was a good read and Blink was almost as interesting. Blink looks at the human subconscious and examines the interaction between conscious and subconscious thought (ie justifying a quick judgment with a rational argument). ITConversations has a recording of Gladwell summarizing some of the book, and it’s an interesting speech for those who don’t want to invest the time to read the whole book.
I think Gladwell has discovered a great recipe for pop-social-science writing. It goes something like this: (1) pick a theme; (2) find some interesting academic studies related to that theme; (3) find some business cases that demonstrate the results of the studies; (4) summarize, add some commentary, and invent some words to describe the recurring concepts. The result is a non-fiction book that applies very directly to people’s lives. Our thoughts and behavior are explained in the context of our branded culture.