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The Science of Fear: How the Culture of Fear Manipulates Your Brain
     

The Science of Fear: How the Culture of Fear Manipulates Your Brain

3.4 7
by Daniel Gardner
 

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“An invaluable resource for anyone who aspires to think clearly” (The Guardianfrom the New York Times bestselling author of Superforecasting and Future Babble

From terror attacks to collapsing economies, from painkiller epidemics to mass gun violence and poisonous toys from China, our list

Overview

“An invaluable resource for anyone who aspires to think clearly” (The Guardianfrom the New York Times bestselling author of Superforecasting and Future Babble

From terror attacks to collapsing economies, from painkiller epidemics to mass gun violence and poisonous toys from China, our list of fears seems to be exploding. Yet we are the safest and healthiest humans in history. Why are we so worried?

The Science of Fear is an introduction to the new brain science of risk, dissecting the fears that misguide and manipulate us every day. Award-winning journalist Dan Gardner demonstrates how irrational fear springs from the ways humans miscalculate risks based on our hunter-gatherer brains. With the exclusive cooperation of risk-science pioneer Paul Slovic and other leading experts, Gardner reveals how our "gut" reactions lead us astray. Understanding our irrational fears frees us from political and corporate manipulation, and makes our choices better. Ultimately, The Science of Fear will make you brave.

“Excellent... Analyzes everything from the media’s predilection for irrational scare stories to the cynical use of fear by politicians… [A] cheery corrective to modern paranoia.”—The Economist
 
“An entertaining, often jolting account of why trivial risks terrify us, even as we engage in wildly dangerous activities with hardly a qualm.”—Kirkus (starred review)
 
“Elegantly weaves academic research and everyday experience, exposing the secrets of emotion and reason, and the essential roles they play on our lives. An excellent book.”—Dan Ariely, New York Times bestselling author of Predictably Irrational

Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
“An excellent work... a cheery corrective to modern paranoia.”—The Economist
 
“An invaluable resource for anyone who aspires to think clearly.”—The Guardian
 
“An entertaining, often jolting account of why trivial risks terrify us, even as we engage in wildly dangerous activities with hardly a qualm.”—Kirkus (starred review)
 
“Gardner’s vivid, direct style, backed up by clear examples and solid data from science and psychology, brings a breath of fresh air and common sense to an emotional topic.”—Publisher's Weekly
 
“Elegantly weaves academic research and everyday experience, exposing the secrets of emotion and reason, and the essential roles they play on our lives. An excellent book.”—Dan Ariely, New York Times bestselling author of Predictably Irrational
 
“Essential reading for anyone interested in the social mistakes we make every day—and how to fix them.”—Tyler Cowen, author of Discover Your Inner Economist
 
“Those of us who spend our careers in research hope that someone like Daniel Gardner will come along and bring our findings to the world in an engaging and scientifically accurate way.”—Paul Slovic, Professor of Psychology, University of Oregon
 
“Compelling... By showing how to read statistics properly and engage the head over gut instinct, Gardner aims to get us thinking more carefully about how we run our lives—and make it harder for politicians, the media and advertisers to lead us astray.”—The New Scientist
 
“Terrific... As a writer, he's exceptionally good—he has the clarity of Malcolm Gladwell.... He takes you through a maze of difficult academic work, and makes it seem simple.”—The Evening Standard
 
“A fascinating insight into the peculiar and devastating nature of human fear, while training the reader to be ever wary of misleading media announcements.”—The Daily Telegraph
 
“Elegantly summarizes the results of psychological research... His chapters on the risk of being a victim of crime or terrorism provoke a peculiar mix of comfort and despair. It is heartening that the danger is slight; it's unsettling how skewed our political system and consumer culture are towards convincing us of the opposite.”—The Observer

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780452295469
Publisher:
Penguin Publishing Group
Publication date:
06/24/2009
Edition description:
Reprint
Pages:
368
Sales rank:
254,686
Product dimensions:
5.40(w) x 8.40(h) x 0.80(d)
Age Range:
18 Years

What People are Saying About This

From the Publisher
"Excellent...analyses everything from the media's predilection for irrational scare stories to the cynical use of fear by politicians... [A] cheery corrective to modern paranoia."
-The Economist

Meet the Author

DAN GARDNER is the New York Times bestselling author of books about psychology and decision-making. His books have been published in 21 countries and 17 languages.

In The Science of Fear, Gardner reveals why we so often worry about what we shouldn’t and don’t worry about what we should. The Guardian called it “an invaluable resource for anyone who aspires to think clearly.”

In Future Babble, Gardner looks at the dismal record of expert forecasts and why we keep listening to overconfident pundits. Harvard psychologist Steven Pinker said it “should be required reading for journalists, politicians, academics, and anyone who listens to them.”

In Superforecasting: The Art and Science of Prediction, Gardner and co-author Philip Tetlock distill important lessons about forecasting, teamwork, and good judgment. Superforecasting was chosen as one of the best books of 2015 by The Economist, Bloomberg, and Amazon.

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The Science of Fear: How the Culture of Fear Manipulates Your Brain 3.4 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 7 reviews.
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