Customer Reviews for

How the Mind Works

Average Rating 3.5
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Most Helpful Favorable Review

2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

I still don't know how the mind works, but who cares! It works!

Pinker is overwhelmingly entertaining. Everything he says explains something about the society of feelings, about the seeming chaos of mind, about the meaning of life. I don¿t care whether Pinker got it right about our minds. At least we know how his mind works! Gisela...
Pinker is overwhelmingly entertaining. Everything he says explains something about the society of feelings, about the seeming chaos of mind, about the meaning of life. I don¿t care whether Pinker got it right about our minds. At least we know how his mind works! Gisela Gasper Fitzgerald, author of ADOPTION: An Open, Semi-Open or Closed Practice?

posted by Anonymous on August 24, 2003

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Most Helpful Critical Review

1 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

Bait and switch writing

The title of this book, while undoubtedly geared to sell copies, is a vast overstatement of what Mr. Pincker is actually selling. In fact, what we laymen generally refer to as 'mind'--the feeling of sentience and the sense of 'I'--are precisely the faculties that Mr. P...
The title of this book, while undoubtedly geared to sell copies, is a vast overstatement of what Mr. Pincker is actually selling. In fact, what we laymen generally refer to as 'mind'--the feeling of sentience and the sense of 'I'--are precisely the faculties that Mr. Pincker admits are currently beyond scientific explanation, indeed which he admits it may be impossible for science to adequately explain. But those admissions are late in the book, while most of the book discusses the current knowledge about how the brain constructs the world from sensory input and how it calculates (thus the bait and switch title to this review). Those descriptions of what science currently knows are actually very informative and worth the price of the book, had the book been adequately edited by the publishing company to remove the grandiose claims and disjointed digressions. Mr. Pincker also trots out a number of old straw men--such as the nonsensical 'Standard Social Science Model'--and then proceeds to cut them down with glee, followed by a wink and a nod to the reader to let us see how very clever he is. So, if you are a good skimmer of books, buy this and pick out the important information. If you are looking for an enjoyable read, then look elsewhere.

posted by Anonymous on April 3, 2008

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 24, 2003

    I still don't know how the mind works, but who cares! It works!

    Pinker is overwhelmingly entertaining. Everything he says explains something about the society of feelings, about the seeming chaos of mind, about the meaning of life. I don¿t care whether Pinker got it right about our minds. At least we know how his mind works! Gisela Gasper Fitzgerald, author of ADOPTION: An Open, Semi-Open or Closed Practice?

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 15, 2003

    How the mind works....sort of

    This book is quite impressive- very well researched, thorough, provocative, and very well written. Pinker has done an admirable job approaching such a massively complex problem. However, I think he's a little thick on the psychology, and thin on the neuroscience. For example, I'm not sure he mentions the word 'neurotransmitter'. Nonetheless, anyone remotely interested in how the mind works ought to read this book.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 9, 2006

    A very informative book

    This is the sort of book you dip into when you're feeling curious, or consult when you have a question about the squishy thing inside your head. Pinker knows what he's talking about, and answers most questions people ask about the mind. While it is very long, this is to be expected as the mind is a complicated thing. I recommended this book to a friend in high school because he kept asking me questions about the mind. It is now one of only two books listed in his Myspace page. Despite what people have said, it is not that difficult to read if you have half a brain. All in all, an excellent book.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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    Posted October 5, 2010

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    Posted December 30, 2010

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    Posted June 13, 2014

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    Posted March 23, 2011

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