- Capa dura: 400 páginas
- Editora: OUP USA (8 de fevereiro de 2018)
- Idioma: Inglês
- ISBN-10: 0190495995
- ISBN-13: 978-0190495992
- Dimensões do produto: 23,9 x 4,3 x 16,3 cm
- Peso de envio: 726 g
- Avaliação média: Seja o primeiro a avaliar este item
- Lista de mais vendidos da Amazon: no. 126,342 em Livros (Conheça o Top 100 na categoria Livros)
The Elephant in the Brain: Hidden Motives in Everyday Life (Inglês) Capa dura – 8 fev 2018
|Novo a partir de||Usado a partir de|
|Prazo||Valor Mensal (R$)||Total (R$)|
|2x sem juros||R$ 82,45||R$ 164,90|
|3x sem juros||R$ 54,98||R$ 164,90|
|4x sem juros||R$ 41,24||R$ 164,90|
|5x sem juros||R$ 32,98||R$ 164,90|
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I don't know if 'EitB' will sell as well as 'CitR' (which outsold 6 of the 7 Harry Potter books), but, pound for pound, its pages are just as valuable.
Like CitR, EitB is about "phoniness". But, unlike CitR, it *explains* phoniness: why it evolved, when/where it is likely to appear, and why we sometimes can't stop ourselves. The book is about our own thoughts, and since we think about ~everything, the concepts have near-universal applicability. Forewarned is forearmed (at least for a certain type of person), and readers will therefore be able to use EitB to improve their health and wealth with superior decision making. However, more interesting to me, is that *some* readers will inherit a repertoire of skills for optimized hyper-phoniness. These people will be world-class persuaders -- eventually, every leader will need to know (or at least name) the ideas presented here, if only for self-defense.
This cognitive science book focuses on "ugly information", ie the kind that you don't want to show to other people. It is hard to talk about these ideas with one's friends. EitB is about disgraceful things -- things that we try not to admit, that we try not to talk about, and that we have in fact **evolved not to even think about**. After digesting the book's lessons, the reader will better understand not only  why our world has problems, but also  why some of those problems cannot be solved using traditional explanations (ie, explanations that take the form of straightforward verbal persuasion).
As I hinted in the first paragraph, Elephant in the Brain is certainly not for everyone. The ideas presented are very unflattering, and, despite the authors' lighthearted attempts to backpedal the significance of their work by talking about the moon landing or whatever, the explanations in EitB are in fact informative, accurate, relevant, and significant. If anyone asks me, readers are in danger of replicating Holden Caulfield's experience of overwhelming frustration. Some people can't handle the truth, Plato's Allegory of the Cave, etc etc, ya know? This is one of those. If you're into that, you know what to do! Buy it!
Simler and Hanson ask you to consider that evolutionary hold-overs motivate even your most selfless acts. The Elephant in the Brain (because it's about a big thing in our brain that we don't acknowledge) argues that many of our actions are motivated by a desire to cultivate allies and mates and, to cultivate effectively, humans have learned to lie others and ourselves. We've learned to fool ourselves into thinking we're pretty great because that makes it easier to fool others into thinking we're pretty great. Our brains evolved succeed in a social setting.
You can argue their explanation is an incomplete understanding of human behavior. The Elephant in the Brain isn't meant to be a handbook of the human brain, able to explain every single thing people do. It's meant to highlight a part of our thinking we willfully ignore. One of the authors is an economist, but the book also draws heavily on psychological and evolutionary research. Indeed, the selfishness argument that's at the heart of the book isn't an economic one (as one reviewer erroneously claims), but an evolutionary one.
Appreciate how hard Simler and Hanson's argument is to show. "You're secretly lying to yourself!" is by definition something people will not be upfront about. Much of the book applies this self-deception/selfishness theory to different areas such as art, education, donations, and body language and concentrates on the contradictions. There's a disconnect between what we claim and what we see. The "elephant in the brain" fills the gap.
To get a feel for how they make their argument, consider their chapter on donations. We typically think of donations as acts of pure selflessness--motivated by a "warm glow" from helping others--but Simler and Hanson point to some contradictions.
-We typically do not do research on the organizations we donate to.
-We are more often motivated by individual stories rather than statistics on effectiveness.
-We rarely keep quiet about our donations and most donations are not anonymous. Even "anonymous" donations aren't kept quiet.
If charity was all about helping others and nothing more, we'd be more careful about where the money goes and wouldn't be so concerned with advertising our benevolence. Charity, Simler and Hanson argue, is an advertisement: a way to show off to others so we can signal success and get allies.
Don't make the mistake in thinking that this a conscious concern; it's more of an explanation as to why the glow is warmer for some acts of charity rather than others. Telling people about our donations feels better than keeping quiet. Helping a person we can identify feels better than helping statistical abstractions that represent people. Our ancestors who were apt at visible giving in a way that felt genuine were more likely to proliferate because they had more allies and better mates. Natural selection made us charitable, but in a weird way.
To their credit, Simler and Hanson don't think humans are terrible people or donations shouldn't occur. They acknowledge multiple times that these hidden motives can have wonderful results. We should just be aware of how easily we can fool ourselves.
This isn't to say that what was in this book is false. Much of what's here is plausible and follows fairly obviously from much of what's written in evolutionary biology. There's just little here that goes beyond that which are the obvious implications and saying something new. The authors say that no one's ever written on this in the past but nothing they said here appeared new or original to me.