Dec 22, 2007

The Tipping Point

How Little Things Can Make a Big Difference
by Malcolm Gladwell

This book is all about how ideas and behavior spread through society. Gladwell explores and analyzes in detail what exactly are the factors that cause something to suddenly become widely popular or effective. Challenging our normal assumptions that things spread in a gradual way, he show us that instead most epidemics (of any sort) reach a certain point at which they "tip" or suddenly grow at exponential rates. The Tipping Point looks at precisely what causes this to happen, and how people can manipulate the spread of ideas or information by making small changes that have large results. It discusses this in such varied contexts as the spread of syphilis, the popularity of a brand of shoes, what makes people heavy smokers, how to most effectively teach a poor community about diabetes, what made Paul Revere's midnight ride so monumental, how New York City fights crime in the subways, what makes the educational tv program Blue's Clues so riveting for children, and much more. Really a fascinating and thought-provoking book.

Rating: 4/5                 301 pages, 2000

2 comments:

Lauren said...

I read Blink by Malcolm Gladwell, and even though some things he said (in my mind) seemed to contradict each other, there were lots of very interesting points in it. This one is on Mt. TBR.
And I recently found out that Gladwell's dad is a professor at my alma matter!

Laura said...

I had a lot of fun with this book while trying to explain to a group of friends why it was so interesting. We started using it like a magic 8-ball. We'd ask a question and flip to a random page. And there would be something relevant to the topic. Spooky.