Willful Blindness

Willful Blindness

Why We Ignore the Obvious at Our Peril

Book - 2012
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"With deft prose and page after page of keen insights, Heffernan shows why we close our eyes to facts that threaten our families, our livelihood, and our self-image--and, even better, she points the way out of the darkness." --Daniel H. Pink

In the tradition of Malcolm Gladwell and Nassim Nicholas Taleb, Margaret Heffernan's Willful Blindness is a tour de force on human behavior that will open your eyes.

Why, after every major accident and blunder, do we look back and say, How could we have been so blind? Why do some people see what others don't? And how can we change? Drawing on studies by psychologists and neuroscientists, and from interviews with business leaders, whistleblowers, and white collar criminals, distinguished businesswoman and writer Margaret Heffernan examines the phenomenon of willful blindness, exploring the reasons that individuals and groups are blind to impending personaltragedies, corporate collapses, engineering failures-even crimes against humanity.

We turn a blind eye in order to feel safe, to avoid conflict, to reduce anxiety, and to protect prestige. But greater understanding leads to solutions, and Heffernan shows how-by challenging our biases, encouraging debate, discouraging conformity, and not backing away from difficult or complicated problems-we can be more mindful of what's going on around us and be proactive instead of reactive.

Publisher: New York : Walker & Co., 2012, c2011.
ISBN: 9780802777966
Characteristics: 294 p. ; 21 cm.


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Ivan W. Taylor
Nov 06, 2014

This book is written by a women with very uncertain credentials. However, she pulls it off with some very effective stories and examples of willful blindness which is her description of business leaders and politicians simply not seeking to know the truth about risk.

Feb 23, 2013

One of the best books I've read in a long time. It's a great summary of why and how we miss important stuff across a number of different fields. And the author writes extremely well and convincingly. I'm going to gift my friends with this book!

Dec 12, 2011

this book should be essential reading for anyone interested in pollitics, the economy, our environment, peace, war, our fractured collective conscience, it asks us to take our heads out of the sand, for our very salvation and safety, five well earned stars

Sep 19, 2011

Loved this book! It's chock full of information that everyone should know, but few of us do. What makes it a great read, however, goes beyond the fascinating content. Heffernan is an astute observer, a smart commentator and a terrific story-teller.


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