What a beautiful rant! Willful Blindness: Why We Ignore the Obvious at Our Peril by Margaret Heffernan is so much fun. The book moves with the pace of a Sci Fi Thriller like Kill Decision. She just rips our day-to-day existence to shreds! Page after page. But like a Sci-Fi Thriller I was turning pages fast. I’ve read about a lot of psychology and neurology mentioned in this book so I’m a bit more willing to believe her.
I keep thinking that there is a connection between “Willful Blindness” and the use of the word “Illusion” in spiritual writings. For example, I’ve read many dharma books where monks mention that “our lives are illusion” and I usually have no clue what they mean. This book is full of “concrete examples of the illusion that is our lives”. Maybe this is what they mean. Super cool and Super not cool. (tip to Doug Duncan for recommending this book and planting this seed )
Here is the “promo description”. It’s a full frontal assault on our daily life. I’ve also got a few links of books and readings on this thread below.
Margaret Heffernan argues that the biggest threats and dangers we face are the ones we don’t see–not because they’re secret or invisible, but because we’re willfully blind. A distinguished businesswoman and writer, she examines the phenomenon and traces its imprint in our private and working lives, and within governments and organizations, and asks: What makes us prefer ignorance? What are we so afraid of? Why do some people see more than others? And how can we change?
Covering everything from our choice of mates to the SEC, Bernard Madoff’s investors, the embers of BP’s refinery, the military in Afghanistan, and the dog-eat-dog world of subprime mortgage lenders, this provocative book demonstrates how failing to see–or admit to ourselves or our colleagues–the issues and problems in plain sight can ruin private lives and bring down corporations. Heffernan explains how willful blindness develops before exploring ways that institutions and individuals can combat it. 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.
- open secrets « Malcolm Gladwell
- The Righteous Mind: Why Good People Are Divided by Politics and Religion « Jonathan Haidt
- Imagine: How Creativity Works « Johah Lehrer
- Neurolaw – Neuroscience and the Law « Iain’s Chips & Tech
- ‘Willful Blindness,’ a Look at Unnoticed Red Flags – Review « NYTimes.com
- When Things Fall Apart: Heart Advice for Difficult Times « Pema Chodron
- Beyond Agency Theory: The Hidden and Heretofore Inaccessible Power of Integrity « Werner Erhard & Michael C. Jensen