What the Dog Saw: And Other Adventures

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Over the past decade, Malcolm Gladwell has become the most gifted and influential journalist in America. In The New Yorker, his writings are such must-reads that the magazine charges advertisers significantly more money for ads that run within his articles. With his #1 bestsellers, The Tipping Point, Blink and Outliers, he has reached millions of readers. And now the very best and most famous of his New Yorker pieces are collected in a brilliant and provocative anthology. Among the pieces: his investigation into ...

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Overview

Over the past decade, Malcolm Gladwell has become the most gifted and influential journalist in America. In The New Yorker, his writings are such must-reads that the magazine charges advertisers significantly more money for ads that run within his articles. With his #1 bestsellers, The Tipping Point, Blink and Outliers, he has reached millions of readers. And now the very best and most famous of his New Yorker pieces are collected in a brilliant and provocative anthology. Among the pieces: his investigation into why there are so many different kinds of mustard but only one kind of ketchup; a surprising assessment of what makes for a safer automobile; a look at how we hire when we can't tell who's right for the job; an examination of machine built to predict hit movies; the reasons why homelessness might be easier to solve than manage; his famous profile of inventor and entrepreneur Ron Popeil; a look at why employers love personality tests; a dissection of Ivy League admissions and who gets in; the saga of the quest to invent the perfect cookie; and a look at hair dye and the hidden history of postwar America.

For the millions of Malcolm Gladwell fans, this anthology is like a greatest hits compilation-a mix tape from America's alpha mind

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Editorial Reviews

From Barnes & Noble
The Tipping Point woke us to the wonders of Malcolm Gladwell; Blink, bringing us up with a start, confirmed his talents of discernment, and Outliers proved that this conscientious outsider was still watching us, picking up clues to how we all tick and synchronize our tics. In this batch of inquiries, Gladwell covers the world: from insurgent warlords to ketchup makers; from canine whisperers to ethnic profilers; from NFL signal callers to high school teachers. Most of us don't fit into any of those categories, but that doesn't lessen our interest in his observations. What the Dog Saw challenges us to think like other people and see like other species.
Steven Pinker
Gladwell is a writer of many gifts. His nose for the untold back story will have readers repeatedly muttering, "Gee, that's interesting!" He avoids shopworn topics, easy moralization and conventional wisdom, encouraging his readers to think again and think different. His prose is transparent, with lucid explanations and a sense that we are chatting with the experts ourselves. Some chapters are masterpieces in the art of the essay.
—The New York Times Book Review
Janet Maslin
This book full of short conversation pieces is a collection that plays to the author's strengths. It underscores his way of finding suitably quirky subjects (the history of women's hair-dye advertisements; the secret of Heinz's unbeatable ketchup; even the effects of women's changing career patterns on the number of menstrual periods they experience in their lifetimes) and using each as gateway to some larger meaning. It illustrates how often he sets up one premise (i.e. that crime profiling helps track down serial killers) only to destroy it.
—The New York Times
Library Journal
Gladwell (The Tipping Point) has gathered 22 of his pieces that have appeared in The New Yorker since 1996, arranging them into three sections: "Obsessive, Pioneers, and Other Varieties of Minor Genius," "Theories, Predictions, and Diagnoses," and "Personality, Character and Intelligence." Fans who are not familiar with Gladwell's articles will be delighted to discover that his shorter work contains the same level of insight, wit, and talent for making the mundane fascinating as they've come to expect from his longer work. Gladwell's writing here is filled with colorful characters, acute analyses, and intriguing questions. However, be warned that the organization of the articles by topic rather than by date can be confusing, especially since much of what Gladwell is discussing has since changed. For instance, although articles about the Challenger explosion, the stock market, and Enron all have postscripts about developments that occurred after the original publication of these pieces, the original publication dates are indicated neither in the table of contents nor at the start of the pieces, frustrating readers' attempts to learn what time period each article covers. VERDICT Fans of Gladwell's writing will want to add this to their bookshelves. [See Prepub Alert, LJ 6/15/09.]—April Younglove, Rochester Regional Lib. Council, NY
Janet Maslin
This evidence of a Gladwell effect helps to predict something larger: that Mr. Gladwell's new book will be as successful as his first three...This book full of short conversation pieces is a collection that plays to the author's strengths. It underscores his way of finding suitably quirky subjects (the history of women's hair-dye advertisements; the secret of Heinz's unbeatable ketchup; even the effects of women's changing career patterns on the number of menstrual periods they experience in their lifetimes) and using each as gateway to some larger meaning.
New York Times
Steven Pinker
Gladwell is a writer of many gifts. His nose for the untold back story will have readers repeatedly muttering, "Gee, that's interesting!" He avoids shopworn topics, easy moralization and conventional wisdom, encouraging his readers to think again and think different...Some chapters are masterpieces in the art of the essay.
The New York Times Book Review
Craig Seligman
Uniformly delightful...Malcolm Gladwell can write engrossingly about just about anything...His witty, probing articles are as essential to David Remnick's New Yorker as those of Wolcott Gibbs and A.J. Liebling were to Harold Ross's...Gladwell has a gift for capturing personalities, a Borscht Belt comic's feel for timing and a bent for counterintuitive thinking. He loves to start a piece by settling you onto a cushion of received ideas, then yanking it out from under you.—
Bloomberg News
Scott Coffman
Malcolm Gladwell triumphantly returns to his roots with this collections of his great works from The New Yorker Magazine....Do yourself a favor and curl up with What the Dog Saw this week: It is more entertaining and edifying than should be legal for any book.
Louisville Courier-Journal
Alice Evans
In What the Dog Saw, Malcolm Gladwell leads the reader on delightful side excursions, shows with insightful conversation how one path interweaves with another, and suggests meaning-he is, in short, an interpretative naturalist of American culture.
The Oregonian
Alex Altman - Time.com
GREAT PRAISE FOR WHAT THE DOG SAW:

"[Malcolm Gladwell] is one of the brightest stars in the media firmament...Gladwell's clear prose and knack for upending conventional wisdom across the social sciences have made The Tipping Point, Blink and Outliers, as well as his lengthy magazine features on topics ranging from cool-hunting to ketchup, into must reads."

Steven Pinker - The New York Times Book Review
"Gladwell is a writer of many gifts. His nose for the untold back story will have readers repeatedly muttering, "Gee, that's interesting!" He avoids shopworn topics, easy moralization and conventional wisdom, encouraging his readers to think again and think different...Some chapters are masterpieces in the art of the essay."
Janet Maslin - New York Times
"This evidence of a Gladwell effect helps to predict something larger: that Mr. Gladwell's new book will be as successful as his first three...This book full of short conversation pieces is a collection that plays to the author's strengths. It underscores his way of finding suitably quirky subjects the history of women's hair-dye advertisements; the secret of Heinz's unbeatable ketchup; even the effects of women's changing career patterns on the number of menstrual periods they experience in their lifetimes and using each as gateway to some larger meaning."
Craig Seligman - Bloomberg News
"Uniformly delightful...Malcolm Gladwell can write engrossingly about just about anything...His witty, probing articles are as essential to David Remnick's New Yorker as those of Wolcott Gibbs and A.J. Liebling were to Harold Ross's...Gladwell has a gift for capturing personalities, a Borscht Belt comic's feel for timing and a bent for counterintuitive thinking. He loves to start a piece by settling you onto a cushion of received ideas, then yanking it out from under you."-
Scott Coffman - Louisville Courier-Journal
"Malcolm Gladwell triumphantly returns to his roots with this collections of his great works from The New Yorker Magazine....Do yourself a favor and curl up with What the Dog Saw this week: It is more entertaining and edifying than should be legal for any book."
Alice Evans - The Oregonian
"In What the Dog Saw, Malcolm Gladwell leads the reader on delightful side excursions, shows with insightful conversation how one path interweaves with another, and suggests meaning-he is, in short, an interpretative naturalist of American culture."
From the Publisher
GREAT PRAISE FOR WHAT THE DOG SAW:

"[Malcolm Gladwell] is one of the brightest stars in the media firmament...Gladwell's clear prose and knack for upending conventional wisdom across the social sciences have made The Tipping Point, Blink and Outliers, as well as his lengthy magazine features on topics ranging from cool-hunting to ketchup, into must reads."—Alex Altman, Time.com

"This evidence of a Gladwell effect helps to predict something larger: that Mr. Gladwell's new book will be as successful as his first three...This book full of short conversation pieces is a collection that plays to the author's strengths. It underscores his way of finding suitably quirky subjects (the history of women's hair-dye advertisements; the secret of Heinz's unbeatable ketchup; even the effects of women's changing career patterns on the number of menstrual periods they experience in their lifetimes) and using each as gateway to some larger meaning."—Janet Maslin, New York Times

"Gladwell is a writer of many gifts. His nose for the untold back story will have readers repeatedly muttering, "Gee, that's interesting!" He avoids shopworn topics, easy moralization and conventional wisdom, encouraging his readers to think again and think different...Some chapters are masterpieces in the art of the essay."—Steven Pinker, The New York Times Book Review

"Uniformly delightful...Malcolm Gladwell can write engrossingly about just about anything...His witty, probing articles are as essential to David Remnick's New Yorker as those of Wolcott Gibbs and A.J. Liebling were to Harold Ross's...Gladwell has a gift for capturing personalities, a Borscht Belt comic's feel for timing and a bent for counterintuitive thinking. He loves to start a piece by settling you onto a cushion of received ideas, then yanking it out from under you."-—Craig Seligman, Bloomberg News

"Malcolm Gladwell triumphantly returns to his roots with this collections of his great works from The New Yorker Magazine....Do yourself a favor and curl up with What the Dog Saw this week: It is more entertaining and edifying than should be legal for any book."—Scott Coffman, Louisville Courier-Journal

"In What the Dog Saw, Malcolm Gladwell leads the reader on delightful side excursions, shows with insightful conversation how one path interweaves with another, and suggests meaning-he is, in short, an interpretative naturalist of American culture."—Alice Evans, The Oregonian

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780316076326
  • Publisher: Litte, Brown, and Co.

Meet the Author

Malcolm Gladwell is a staff writer for The New Yorker. He was formerly a business and science reporter at the Washington Post.

Biography

At the start of the 21st century, a new form of narrative nonfiction emerged, blending science, sociology, and pop culture into a compulsively readable hybrid genre marked by originality, accessibility, and a breezy, anecdotal style. As much as any single writer, and perhaps more than most, journalist and bestselling author Malcolm Gladwell has helped to forge that genre.

Born in the U.K. and raised in rural Canada, Gladwell stumbled into journalism purely by accident. After college, he wanted to pursue a career in advertising; but when he was unable to find work in that field, he took a job with the conservative U.S. monthly The American Spectator. In 1987, he joined The Washington Post, where he reported on business and science for nearly a decade. Then, in 1996, Tina Brown hired him to work for The New Yorker. (Brown left the magazine in 1998. Gladwell is still on staff.)

Almost from the beginning, Gladwell's work for The New Yorker attracted attention. Of particular interest was a piece he wrote in June 1996 about a mysterious and dramatic drop in the New York City crime rate. Drawing its title -- and its argument -- from the field of epidemiology, "The Tipping Pont" described a single moment in time when the momentum for change becomes virtually unstoppable. The piece generated an enormous reader response, and Gladwell began to explore the applications of the principle to other sorts of changes -- ideas, behaviors, new products, etc. In 2000, he published a full-length book that reached a tipping point of its own and logged a spectacular 28 weeks on the New York Times bestseller list.

In subsequent books, Gladwell has delved into other thought-provoking topics, such as the role of snap judgments and intuition in decision making (Blink: The Power of Thinking Without Thinking) and the qualities that set high achievers apart from the rest of us (Outliers: The Story of Success). Readers love these intriguing reads for their clear, accessible language and illustrations drawn from real life; but it is the business community, always anxious to spot the next big thing, that has recognized the relevance of Gladwell's ideas to sales, marketing, and public relations. As a result of his popularity with this group, he has become a much-in-demand public speaker.

Good To Know

  • Gladwell's English father is a civil engineer and his mother is a Jamaican-born psychotherapist.

  • Growing up in Canada at a time when the country was essentially a socialist nation, Gladwell was a self-professed right-wing kid. "Being a conservative was the kind of fun, radical thing to do," he told The New York Times. He notes that his politics have changed over the years.

  • When Gladwell decided to grow his formerly short and conservatively cut hair into an Afro, he began to receive special, unwanted attention (more speeding tickets, additional checks in airport security lines, etc.). These experiences got him thinking about how first impressions lead to snap judgments -- which inspired his bestseller Blink.

  • Starbucks' founder Howard Schultz publicly attributed his company's success to the tipping-point phenomenon.

  • In 2005, Time Magazine named Gladwell one of the 100 Most Influential People.

  • Read More Show Less
      1. Hometown:
        New York, NY
      1. Date of Birth:
        September 3, 1963
      2. Place of Birth:
        England, U.K.
      1. Education:
        University of Toronto, History degree, 1984

    Table of Contents

    Preface

    PART ONE:
    "To a worm in horseradish, the world is horseradish."
    Obsessives, pioneers, and other varieties of minor genius.

    The Pitchman
    Ron Popeil and the conquest of the American kitchen

    The Ketchup Conundrum
    Mustard now comes in dozens of different varieties. Why has ketchup stayed the same?

    Blowing Up
    How Nassim Taleb turned the inevitability of disaster into an investment strategy.

    True Colors
    Hair Dye and the hidden history of postwar America

    John Rock's Error
    What the inventor of the birth control pill didn't know about women's health

    What the Dog Saw
    Cesar Millan and the movements of mastery

    PART TWO:
    "It was like driving down an interstate looking through a soda straw."
    Theories, Predictions and Diagnoses

    Open Secrets
    Enron, intelligence and the perils of too much information

    Million Dollar Murray
    Why problems like homelessness may be easier to solve than to manage

    The Picture Problem
    Mammography, air power, and the limits of looking.

    Something Borrowed
    Should a charge of plagiarism ruin your life?

    Connecting the Dots
    The paradoxes of intelligence reform.

    The Art of Failure
    Why some people choke and others panic

    Blowup
    Who can be blamed for a disaster like the Challenger explosion? No one, and we'd better get used to it.

    PART THREE:
    " 'He'll be wearing a doubled breasted suit. Buttoned.'-and he was."
    Personality, character and intelligence.

    Most Likely to Succeed
    How do we hire when we can't tell who's right for the job.

    Dangerous Minds
    Criminal profiling made easy

    The TalentMyth
    Are smart people over-rated?

    Late Bloomers
    Why do we equate genius with precocity?

    The New Boy Network
    What do job interviews really tell us?

    Troublemakers
    What pit bulls can teach us about crime
    Read More Show Less

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