David and Goliath

David and Goliath

Underdogs, Misfits, and the Art of Battling Giants

Audiobook CD - 2013
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Malcolm Gladwell, the #1 bestselling author of The Tipping Point, Blink, Outliers, and What the Dog Saw, offers his most provocative---and dazzling---book yet.

Three thousand years ago on a battlefield in ancient Palestine, a shepherd boy felled a mighty warrior with nothing more than a stone and a sling, and ever since then the names of David and Goliath have stood for battles between underdogs and giants. David's victory was improbable and miraculous. He shouldn't have won.

Or should he have?

In David and Goliath , Malcolm Gladwell challenges how we think about obstacles and disadvantages, offering a new interpretation of what it means to be discriminated against, or cope with a disability, or lose a parent, or attend a mediocre school, or suffer from any number of other apparent setbacks.

Gladwell begins with the real story of what happened between the giant and the shepherd boy those many years ago. From there, David and Goliath examines Northern Ireland's Troubles, the minds of cancer researchers and civil rights leaders, murder and the high costs of revenge, and the dynamics of successful and unsuccessful classrooms---all to demonstrate how much of what is beautiful and important in the world arises from what looks like suffering and adversity.

In the tradition of Gladwell's previous bestsellers--- The Tipping Point , Blink , Outliers and What the Dog Saw--- David and Goliath draws upon history, psychology, and powerful storytelling to reshape the way we think of the world around us.
Publisher: New York : Hachette Audio, p2013.
Edition: Unabridged ed.
ISBN: 9781611137521
Characteristics: 6 sound discs (ca. 7 hr.) : digital ; 4 3/4 in.


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Oct 29, 2017

I used to watch cartoons because the little guys beat the big guys.
Now Gladwell tells me that the little guy can overcome his Goliath if he thinks unconventionally. He also provides examples of accepted thought that is just wrong.

The trick is to realize when to dig deeper and when to reject group think. I enjoyed the book.

Jun 29, 2016

So the book has some interesting stories, especially early on. For example, choosing where to go college was an interesting idea. I remember reading the story on the basketball team before, which is good. The book gets less interesting toward the end. But the book does show a couple interesting ways of looking at things.

Feb 11, 2016

A fascinating perspective on winning and losing - not to mention what really is a weakness and what really is a strength. Great perspectives for teachers/educators as well as law enforcement agencies and political groups like Black Lives Matter.

Nov 17, 2015

I have loved every book that Gladwell has written aside from David and Goliath. I foundthe book to be quite boring and lacking good content. I read 3/4 of the way through this book hoping that it would get better but I was sadly mistaken. The thesis was not strong and the examples he gave to support his premise did not capture me. I'm disappointed.

Jul 29, 2014

I've come to expect a higher standard from Malcolm Gladwell and his latest work, David and Goliath, is another compelling triumph.

Similar to how his previous book, Outliers: The Story of Success, explores the complex underpinnings of the popular success narrative, this one takes the underdog v giant narrative, turns it on its head, and shows the contradictory variables at work. We mythologize the Davids and the Goliaths of this world in a way that grossly underestimates the underdog's inherent advantage and the giant's masked weaknesses. My favorite moments are the comparisons of the "big fish / little pond" and "little fish / big pond" examples. Classic Gladwell and spot on!

I was absorbed throughout with the exception of a portion near the middle. My attention noticeably waned as he discussed the Civil Rights Movement and the British occupation of Ireland. I think that, looking back, even though the material relates to the underdog's resourcefulness and the inverted U-shaped curve previously introduced, the connection to the book's central thesis wasn't as clear here as in the other chapters.

librarylizzard Jul 02, 2014

I was interested to read this based on its popularity, though once I got my hands on it I was a bit disappointed. The premise is good (David beats Goliath, showing the perceived advantages are not always true advantages, followed by real world examples) but I was never captured by the book's content. Once I was halfway through I finished just to say I'd done it. A few good tidbits here and there, but it isn't nonfiction I'd recommend unless the person had an interest in the specific examples he provides (the impact on class size on achievement, for example).

Jan 26, 2014

As usual, Malcolm Gladwell has a number of wonderful stories to relate and he tells them in a very engaging style. These stories come from disparate sets of circumstances. However, it never is very clear to what extent the conclusions that he wants his readers to draw are applicable elsewhere. Only in the end does he hint that the applicability is limited.

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