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Changing Minds: The Art And Science of Changing Our Own And Other People's Minds

3.61  ·  Rating details ·  573 ratings  ·  43 reviews
Think about the last time you tried to change someone’s mind about something important: a voter’s political beliefs; a customer’s favorite brand; a spouse’s decorating taste. Chances are you weren’t successful in shifting that person’s beliefs in any way. In his book, Changing Minds, Harvard psychologist Howard Gardner explains what happens during the course of changing a ...more
Paperback, 272 pages
Published September 1st 2006 by Harvard Business Review Press (first published 2004)
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Dec 04, 2008 rated it did not like it
This book was extremely disappointing. Despite its subtitle, it really never talks much about the art and science of changing our own and other people's minds. A far more appropriate subtitle would be: Examples of Famous People Who Changed Their Minds With No Explanation For Why or How, and Some Other Stuff I Think Is Interesting

The first three chapters, apparently, explain how people change their minds. It makes a claim that mind change happens over time, not with sudden epiphanies, but give no
Henry Manampiring
Sep 12, 2007 rated it it was ok
Recommends it for: anyone with too much time or wanting to impress chicks (CERTAIN type, that is)
A waste of 80% of my time and money. It's irony that the book started by explaining the 80:20 principle as illustration, because that's just exactly what the book is all about. 20% of the book already covers 80% of the idea, the rest is rather lengthy reiteration of the previous points.

Don't get me wrong. Gardner does propose new ideas (to me). The 7 levers of mind change is useful and quick summary of his earlier concept of multiple intelligences is a nice bonus. But the rest is examples and st
Benjamin Fasching-Gray
Feb 08, 2013 rated it did not like it
Shelves: psychology
I read this cover to cover. It is like a long psychology today article, or like an informal chat over a beer with a tenured professor who did enough in the past that no one is reviewing his research or his teaching anymore. The book is a loose collection of anecdotes, I imagine Gardner reading some biographies he thought were interesting and then suddenly realizing he had to publish something soon so he thought about what did these diverse people have in common and then he gave it some structure ...more
Sep 08, 2007 rated it did not like it
Shelves: book_club
I went into this book expecting little, and, despite the author's professed knowledge to the contrary, it failed to change my mind. Gardner is known for his work in education on multiple intelligences. Here, he repackages things for a business audience and trys just as hard to sort various concepts and strategies into levers and forms and I don't remember what other terms. He has 7 strategies that all start with "re" - but if this is for simplicity's sake, I don't know that elements like "repres ...more
Oct 31, 2010 rated it did not like it
Little of interest,

I stopped reading when I got to the part about how BP transformed into
a great company.

Many dead from a refinery explosion & the GOM spill later leaves one
wondering if the author knows what he's talking about.
Dec 12, 2019 rated it really liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Nov 09, 2011 rated it it was ok
Shelves: finished
This is the last book recommended by Oprah that I will read....written for the "very" average pop consumer. Everything you need to know from this book can be learned in the first 30 pages, which are not bad, but the rest.... ...more
Dec 20, 2019 rated it it was amazing
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Billie Pritchett
Dec 24, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: howard-gardner
I don't know that I want to write too much in this book and at any rate I skimmed it (the second book I've skimmed this month). I will just lay out Howard Gardner's basic ideas in Changing Minds. According to Gardner, the components of mind are concepts, theories, and skills. (I don't know if this is true--seems too simple--but I'll bite.) Concepts are objects of study. Pick your favorite: gravity, ego, Pythagorean theorem. Theories are explanations of the world that make use of concepts. Skills ...more
Jun 26, 2017 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
More analysis than how-to manual, which I think is what I was hoping for, but the subject material was interesting nonetheless. I like reading analyses of big mind changes for others.

The author seems incredibly intelligent at categorizing things, but for the sheer number of different concepts introduced, and even for someone like me who can usually hold a lot at the front of my mind all at once, I would not be able to tell you what all the "Re"s were or exactly how many of them existed on which
James Smith
Apr 03, 2018 rated it it was ok
If your looking for insights or techniques on how to change minds then this book would be a waste of your time. What is provided are general stories or brief references in which minds were changed whereby you will be left empty-handed or with petty morcels of wisdom.
Jafreen Alamgir
Nov 18, 2018 rated it liked it
An interesting example as to we can use various methods to change people's minds around us. Unfortunately, I lost track due to the fact that the author has used so many neuroscience and doctoral terms. ...more
Ryan Barretto
May 21, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A brilliant read. So much insight on the issue of changing minds - at national levels, homogeneous groups, through ideas, between intimate people (family, friends) and one's own mind.

Strongly recommended for HR people, business folk, leaders, sales people...
Some nice tips and takes on psychology and neuroscience, but the general feel was that it was unnecessarily dragged out. Most of the contents I found quite irrelevant to the subject matter at hand.
Diva 3aLyONaH
Feb 13, 2020 rated it really liked it
“We can change our minds and the minds of others around us”
Torre Near
Dec 30, 2020 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition

Wordy, esoteric, arrogant, and not helpful. This is a terrible book. It was a waste of time to read it.
Arjun Saravanan
Aug 19, 2019 rated it really liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
This book is indeed quite insightful, it provides a means of Mind-Changing that is I believe rooted in more profound ways then the typical run-of-the-mill book on manipulation and persuasion.

This book provides many examples to illustrate common themes that are present behind many levels of society and relationships within society, from the mind-changing that goes on at the national level to the mind-changing that goes on in the bedroom; from the mind-changing that goes on in the foreground to t
Initially NO
Nov 12, 2014 rated it liked it
I'd like to highlight P 123, 'Picasso quipped that painting is a science which the individual paintings are the experiments. It is not difficult to make an innovative work of art, but it is challenging to create a work or a series of works that resonate with informed audience readers, eventually, with a larger public.'

The artist who breaks, 'through to popular acceptance must somehow neutralise the resistances - much as a persuasive storyteller manages to undermine the prevailing counter stories
Bibhu Ashish
Mar 17, 2013 rated it really liked it
A systematic way of looking at the task of changing one's POV. You may be working as a professional or you may be a leader in some business corporation or leading a nation,this book is definitely going to help in any small or big argument you find yourself in.The author has given a good framework to use when we want to change peoples' viewpoint.What I loved about the book is the systematic way of approaching the complex phenomena of change in people's perception about the incidents.The book has ...more
Eliezer Sneiderman
Jul 21, 2013 rated it liked it
While there are some interesting points in this book, it feels to much like a business school book. There are a lot of anecdotes to back up Gardner's assertions but not much research here.

On one side, I think it is important to see people has having multiple strengths. People do not think in one fashion. On the other side, to say that one's thinking is consistent and type-able is ridiculous.

I distrust any book with a taxonomy. People are holistic, not types. The advantage of Gardner over most
Dražen Nikolić
Mar 06, 2012 rated it it was ok
Recommends it for: no one :)
Recommended to Dražen by: Sanja Bertović
Shelves: 2012
I found example stories from this book to be interesting and poignant, maybe even good-to-know trivia, but a lot of the book's content is repetitive and you have the feeling that nothing crucial or innovative is being said or pointed out as you read on. I definitely wouldn't recommend this book to anyone involved with psychology or psychiatry since it's written in plain language readable for a wide population. As a brief introduction to the subject of "changing minds" this book is justified, but ...more
I'm actually reading this for a class, and I gotta say, it's a really fascinating read. Gardner prefers a mix of cognitive/ behavioral psychology, with an emphasis on the cognitive side. He's got some pretty interesting ideas -- I like his breakdown of multiple types of intelligences -- and he uses both current science and anecdotal examples to illustrate his arguments.

Unfortunately, for the class I kind of have to jump around in my reading and I have two other class-required books I'm reading
Jun 20, 2011 rated it it was amazing
Howard Gardner is the cognitive psychologist who developed the theory of 8 types of intelligence (now 9 types) in the late 80's. This book, "Changing Minds", is an excellent expansion on this theory, illustrating through the lens of cognitive psychology how we change our own minds and others. The information in this book can be applied to many aspects of life-- I will certainly adapt my teaching and professional development strategies in new ways. ...more
Aug 20, 2014 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: psychology
The contents of the mind -- The forms of the mind -- The power of early theories -- Leading a diverse population -- Leading an institution : how to deal with a uniform population -- Changing minds indirectly - through scientific discoveries, scholarly breakthroughs, and artistic creations -- Mind changing in a formal setting -- Mind changing up close -- Changing ones own mind -- Epilogue : the future of mind changing.
Jared Newswanger
Jan 06, 2009 rated it it was amazing
A little repetitive and less academic than I would have liked, it seemed like he was trying to be Malcolm Gladwell with this one, but despite all the anecdotal non-sense, it was full of great insight that were very interesting to think about. Howard Gardner is the rare guy that will definately still be discussed 100 years from now.
Jul 22, 2016 rated it it was ok
Shelves: in-2016
If you're going to read this book, read the Epilogue and the Appendix and jump around to whichever chapter sounds interesting. Definitely was not a linear read for me—I found it more useful to skim. I'm not sure how much was this book or how much was outside factors, but I literally could not keep concentrated on this book for long periods of time. ...more
Feb 21, 2009 rated it liked it
- i like gardener, so enjoyed the book
- good info for those of us out there who favor cognition/thoughts/mind as a dominant player (cognitive-minded; cognitive-oriented/orientation; CBT; Self-Leadership)
Rob Carr
Jun 15, 2016 rated it really liked it
Unfortunately I cant say this book changed my mind but I certainly found it an interesting read. Reading this book helped me to crystalise some of my own ideas in this space more clearly and sets out a fairly persuasive argument. Would recommend.
May 24, 2009 added it
Intriguing ideas from Gardner. I am looking forward to reading more about his theory of multiple intelligences.
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Howard Gardner is the John H. and Elisabeth A. Hobbs Professor of Cognition and Education at the Harvard Graduate School of Education. He also holds positions as Adjunct Professor of Psychology at Harvard University and Senior Director of Harvard Project Zero. Among numerous honors, Gardner received a MacArthur Prize Fellowship in 1981. He has received honorary degrees from 26 colleges and univers ...more

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