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Why Societies Need Dissent

3.96  ·  Rating Details ·  94 Ratings  ·  8 Reviews
In this timely book, Cass R. Sunstein shows that organizations and nations are far more likely to prosper if they welcome dissent and promote openness. Attacking "political correctness" in all forms, Sunstein demonstrates that corporations, legislatures, even presidents are likely to blunder if they do not cultivate a culture of candor and disclosure. He shows that ...more
Paperback, 256 pages
Published April 30th 2005 by Harvard University Press (first published 2003)
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Vegard Pettersen
Feb 04, 2014 Vegard Pettersen rated it it was ok
Recommends it for: Conservatives, americans, law-students
I may be overly critical in my rating.

The book starts out well and with good intentions, but the author's background is in law and not in psychology, and my impression is that he lacks perspective in game-theory to successfully explain the relevance and meaning of some of the consensus-dissent experiments he refers to.

Also I'm biased in that I am getting a conservative vibe from the way he speaks about conservative dissent not being welcome on campuses. I find that irrelevant and biased, given t
...more
Robert
Feb 19, 2014 Robert rated it it was amazing
As someone currently attending law school, Cass Sunstein is a name that has become very familiar to me over the past three years. However, graduate school was not where I first encountered the author. My sophomore year of college, I picked up this book in my school's library, flipped through a few pages, and was impressed enough to buy my own copy. Based on the Holmes Lectures given at Harvard, Mr. Sunstein has a crafted a book that takes note that what are currently unpopular opinions often ...more
Ann Michael
Jun 09, 2014 Ann Michael rated it it was amazing
I think this book is brilliant. It's clear enough that the layperson can understand some challenging statistical and psycho-social research; Sunstein's argument is pretty sound (and based a bit on the work of Daniel Kahneman, whose work I also appreciate). I haven't always agreed with Sunstein's opinions over the years; but he does his homework as far as research goes, and his logic is generally quite sound. This book makes a strong argument for the value of and need for freedom of expression in ...more
Surina Suhaimi
Jan 08, 2016 Surina Suhaimi rated it it was amazing
This book came highly recommended in one of our group discussions in Melbourne University with a practising lawyer from New Zealand while he was sharing with us his experiences of defending activists and protesters in his country. It is a very stimulating book and I would recommend this book to anyone wanting to understand why we should not just follow the herd.
Brad Bitzer
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Why Societies Need Dissent (Oliver Wendell Holmes Lectures) by Cass R. Sunstein (2003)
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Cass R. Sunstein is an American legal scholar, particularly in the fields of constitutional law, administrative law, environmental law, and law and behavioral economics, who currently is the Administrator of the White House Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs in the Obama administration. For 27 years, Sunstein taught at the University of Chicago Law School, where he continues to teach as ...more
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