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What the Dog Saw: And Other Adventures

3.85  ·  Rating details ·  81,055 ratings  ·  4,359 reviews
What is the difference between choking and panicking? Why are there dozens of varieties of mustard-but only one variety of ketchup? What do football players teach us about how to hire teachers? What does hair dye tell us about the history of the 20th century?
In the past decade, Malcolm Gladwell has written three books that have radically changed how we understand our wor
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Paperback, 410 pages
Published December 14th 2010 by Back Bay Books (first published 2009)
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3.85  · 
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 ·  81,055 ratings  ·  4,359 reviews


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Diane
This is an interesting collection of Malcolm Gladwell's writings that were originally published in The New Yorker. In the preface, Gladwell says this collection includes his favorite articles. I've read most of his books, and What the Dog Saw is a similarly fun mix of popular sociology, psychology, economics, social history and marketing. My favorite articles in the bunch were the ones on Ron Popeil, hair color, Cesar Millan, homelessness, plagiarism, criminal profiling and pit bulls.

Gladwell i
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Trevor
I’m very fond of Malcolm Gladwell’s writing. It is hard for me to not gush about someone who is living a life I would love to live. I guess I should feel jealous of him, but instead I just feel grateful to know that someone can live that life.

And I really love his writing. He is a writer who never leaves his readers behind, who is always beautifully clear and who structures what he has to say in ways that not only compel you to go on reading, but also so he takes you by the hand and makes sure
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Karen
Jan 29, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
In What the Dog Saw, Gladwell offers a treasure chest of gems, each shining brightly on their own. In each essay, Gladwell usually starts with one puzzling situation and then adds information and other narratives to complicate the topic. Then the first situation resurfaces midway and at the conclusion, helping to bring the topic to closure. Most of the time, his underlying thesis runs along the lines of "Wow, things are a lot more complicated or a lot more simple than they seem." He's obsessed w ...more
Ryan
Aug 19, 2012 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: read-in-2012
"One day, I'll find a lively, out-of-context anecdote that superficially explains why Malcolm Gladwell bugs me. Until then? I guess he wins."
— Merlin Mann
- - -

What The Dog Saw is a series of catchy social-science essays by Malcom Gladwell, best known for his long-form books The Tipping Point, Blink, and Outliers. The book's essays are culled from a decade worth of his writing in The New Yorker.

I'm on the fence about Malcolm Gladwell. On one hand, his books are thought-provoking and enjoyable. O
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Riku Sayuj
Oct 25, 2011 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Probably the best Malcolm Gladwell book that I've read, and I've read them all.
S.Baqer Al-Meshqab
This could be my least favorite book for Gladwell. In my opinion, it is usually hard to construct a book that is likeable enough, out of a collection of articles or blogs. I honestly didn't expect too much out of it.

However, being my least favorite doesn't make it bad. It is actually good, real good. For a book that compiles several titles, Galdwell did a good job in explaining each idea and support it with social experiments and Statistics. I can't say that I liked EVERY article, because I didn
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Thomas
Jan 17, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Not my typical reading fare - you can tell by the dearth of nonfiction on my Goodreads shelf and the time it took me to read this. What the Dog Saw is divided into three sections: Part 1 - Obsessives, Pioneers, and Other Varieties of Minor Genius, Part 2 - Theories, Predictions, and Diagnoses, and Part 3 - Personality, Character, and Intelligence.

I didn't enjoy Part 1 as much as 2 or 3 because I could not connect with the anecdotes or the characters within each short story. They weren't actual f
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Tania Lukinyuk
Jan 11, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I finally-finally finished it! But not because it is boring - it is collection of articles by Gladwell, so it does not go down like one single book. All articles clearly demonstrate inquisitive mind and quick wit of Gladwell, but not all of them are of equal interest and thrill. Some articles feel like they are concocted out of thin air, some are too plain and unexcited. But I was fascinated by the stories of colorant revolution in the US, value of talent and specifics of human perceptions at jo ...more
Rebecca
Feb 25, 2010 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: non-fiction
A little background: I really love Malcolm Gladwell. I was first introduced to him through my Persuasion class I took while studying abroad last summer. We had to read Blink, his first published book; it was one of the most interesting books I have ever read for a class. He is no stranger to writing, though. His full-time occupation is as a journalist for the New Yorker.

Why is he so amazing, might you ask? I'll tell you. Malcolm Gladwell has this amazing ability in his writing to find things tha
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Ana
Each of the articles first appeared in The New Yorker and was handpicked by Gladwell to show us the world through the eyes of various people and even a dog. The book is divided in 3 parts: Obsessives, Pioneers, and other varieties of Minor Genius, Theories, Predictions, and Diagnoses and Personality, Character, and Intelligence.
Cortney
Jul 24, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I know, I know. Malcolm Gladwell brings out extremes in readers. In one camp, you have rabid fans who think he is a transcendent genius, who will change previously held beliefs on the strength of one carefully crafted and engaging TED talk. On the other, you have cynics who sneer at the lemmings who behave as I previously described and dismiss him as a pop psychologist. Ok, perhaps that was even more extreme in my description, but the point is I'm in the middle. If one thinks of him as a philoso ...more
Loy Machedo
After being rejected by more than a dozen advertising agencies, Malcolm Gladwell went from obscurity to literary reverence. I mean the guy can write. Not just write but write about stuff we take so for granted and wish we had asked the same questions he asks.

One of the most imaginative non-fiction writers of our times, a man who not has had 3 best sellers and a title to die for (being judged as the Time magazine’s 100 most influential people) – his strength is his innate ability to make his read
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Carmen
Nov 18, 2013 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Curious people
This is a series of essays, non-fiction. They were very smart and interesting.

1.) The Pitchman is a about a salesman.

2.) The Ketchup Conundrum is about how tastes are developed and how people deal with challenges to that developed taste.

3.) Blowing Up is about investment strategy, it's kind of boring.

4.) True Colors. This is about hair dye and advertising. I liked it.

5.) John Rock's Error. This was about birth control. He raises some interesting points, but I don't know if I agree with all
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Robert
Sep 11, 2011 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2011
I didn't buy this book because it is a collection of already published articles, nearly all of which I have read already. But I saw it at the library and decided to read it anyway. What a wonderfully fun experience.
There are quite a few criticism I could make of these articles. Gladwell is a storyteller and sometimes lets telling a good story take precedence over reality. In his case, this usually means making all of the pieces fit together just so, instead of revealing the messy way that the w
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Caidyn (SEMI-HIATUS; BW Reviews; he/him/his)
This review and others can be found on BW Book Reviews.

3.5/5

I have to say that this was average. A very average book that had many interesting stories (or adventures as Gladwell called them) but not many that stood out. I can think of four stories, technically three topics, that really stood out to me.

The first was one that dealt with plagiarism. Since I’m a new graduate from college, I definitely know all about that stuff and how important it is not to do that. Gladwell took a story — a woman w
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Punk
May 26, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: ebook, non-fiction, essays
Non-Fiction. A collection of essays previously published in The New Yorker, with publication dates ranging from 1997 to 2008.

Gladwell is at his pop science best here, taking on Enron, corporate hiring practices, pitbulls, homelessness, Cesar Millan, plagiarism, and the hair color industry. He even manages to make stock options transparent for a while. As always, his writing is deft, easy, and accessible.

I particularly enjoyed the piece on the Morris-Popeil (of the Ron Popeil Popeils) Dynasty, th
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Richard
Nov 09, 2009 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Richard by: Trevor McCandless
Shelves: nonfiction, cognition
I hadn't realized this was a collection of Gladwell's essays, many (most? all?) have seen publication in the New Yorker. I found this out while reading the New York Times essay on the book, Malcolm Gladwell, Eclectic Detective, by none other than Steven Pinker. His evaluation of What the Dog Saw is mostly laudatory pretty hostile*, although and he takes the opportunity to get a dig in at Outliers:
The reasoning in “Outliers,” which consists of cherry-picked anecdotes, post-hoc sophistry and false
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Kenny Tang
MMmmm... Leftover scraps... This book felt like a forced dish of leftovers from other books or articles. It lacked a clear central theme to derive a clear lesson unlike other books in Gladwell's collection like Tipping Point (Small things builds critical mass and changes norm), Blink (Small samples can help make valuable decisions), Outliers (10,000 hours of practice to achieve greatness). This book was just a mish-mash of stories, some good, some so so, but mostly unrelated or at least I was to ...more
Pradnya K.
While reading this book I was wondering all the way - how nice it would be to open a magazine and find such intriguing, well-researched, knowledgeable post with a morning tea!
Yes, these are the posts from The New Yorker where he has been working. Such fine posts are rarity these days.

I like non fiction. Especially when they're told in intriguing way like this. It's fun to read and many times I found myself waiting for what's next? This is hard to achieve when it comes to research and real life
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David
There seems to have been a bit of a backlash against Malcolm Gladwell during the last year, but this book, a collection of his New Yorker pieces, reminds us why he achieved such prominence to begin with. Gladwell's particular talent is to take a subject which might seem initially to be irredeemably dull and to poke at it from all sides until he locates the particular angle which will allow him to tell a story, simultaneously entertaining and edifying his readers. There's a little more to it than ...more
Julie
Mar 03, 2010 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I've got to hand it to Malcolm Gladwell; the man knows how to engage his reader. What the Dog Saw is a collection of articles Gladwell has written over the last ten years or so, each about 20-30 pages. Frankly, I think this is the perfect length for his writings, long enough to delve into the topic, but not so long that it feels he's making the same point over and over. The Time review called Gladwell "an omniscient, many-armed Hindu god of anecdotes," and that's actually what it feels like to r ...more
Kiwiflora
What makes the writing of Malcolm Gladwell so interesting and compelling to read is that he looks at the everyday stuff of life just a little bit differently from the rest of us. He must have been an incredibly curious child, probably driving his parents completely crazy with question after question about absolutely everything. And most of the stuff he writes about is stuff that from time to time may flash through our minds, but there it stops. In 'Outliers', for example, he looks at why Asians ...more
Eileen Souza
Another solidly enjoyable book from Malcolm Gladwell! He's definitely in my top 5 "I can count on a good book by..." list.

This is a compilation of New Yorker articles that he has written over the last 15 years. There were riveting chapters on why the Pill is a monthly medication (and it's impact on women - basically quadrupling the number of lifetime periods, and directly correlating to cancers), another on why there are many different mustard types, but there's only Heinz ketchup (actually quit
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Mark
Feb 07, 2010 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Malcolm Gladwell has become a "hot" non-fiction writer, although he has obviously been around for a while. His recent books "Blink", "The Tipping Point", and "Outliers" have been hugely successful. I found his latest "What the Dog Saw" in the library. When writers finally hit their stride, some of their earlier work gets re-published. These are short essays he wrote over the last 20 years.
Gladwell's appeal is that he is a charming "geek" (just look at him!) who picks unusual subjects and makes
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Sterlingcindysu
Apr 23, 2015 rated it really liked it
The main thing I got from this book is that I miss magazines and being able to read an article on a subject I'd never thought about, and learn something in 15 minutes. If I told you "choking is when you overthink a situation and panicking is when you stop thinking" that doesn't carry the same weight as reading one of these articles, yet that is how most of us get information anymore, in short slideshows, bulletin points and twitter feeds.

I read this over time--as a monthly magazine would have b
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Paul,
Jan 25, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
What the Dog Saw is a compilation of Malcolm Gladwell's best writing for the New Yorker. As always, Gladwell's work is informative, provocative, and fun to read. While I don't always agree with Gladwell's opinions, I always enjoy reading them.

In this work, my favorite piece was called "John Rocks Error: What the Inventor of Birth Control Didn't Know About Women's Health". This may surprise you because I'm not a woman, and I'm not really interested in birth control. I am very interested in the cu
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Ensiform
Nov 17, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: non-fiction
A collection of Gladwell’s articles from “The New Yorker” – musings on what makes people tick, why some ideas fail, and how well we can predict a person’s success in a particular field, profiles of leaders, “obsessives,” and quirky geniuses. As with all of Gladwell’s books, he turns every story into a human-interest story, every idea into a lesson about what humans believe in their innermost souls. So the tireless Ron Popeil (of Ronco fame) and Cesar Milan and the female copy writers behind hair ...more
Jamie
Mar 12, 2010 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Unlike Outliers, The Tipping Point, or Blink, Malcom Gladwell's newest book What the Dog Saw isn't an examination of one topic cut from whole cloth, but rather an eclectic mix of articles that originally appeared in The New Yorker. In it he examines everything from why it's impossible to improve on Ketchup, why Enron's failure was a mystery but not a puzzle, what makes for a good dog trainer, and what FBI criminal profilers have in common with psychics. It's good stuff.

The format of What the Dog
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Mohammad Ali Abedi
This is a collection of Malcolm Gladwell’s articles as published in “The New Yorker”. We live in a time where a lot of us don’t really read magazines anymore. I certainly don’t. But I do come across all kinds of magazine and newspaper articles when I search for something and Google directs me to that page. Reading this, I am wondering if that is wise. That just means I am reading about subjects I am looking for. But what about subjects that does not even cross my mind?

Malcolm separates the book
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Deb
Feb 25, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
*The Heinz of Non-fiction*

In "The Ketchup Conundrum" essay of this book, Malcom Gladwell deconstructs ketchup in an attempt to fathom why its composition--unlike that of its mustard condiment counterpart--has stayed the same the throughout the years. The secret behind ketchup's success rests in its precise combination of ingredients which together hit all of the "primal buttons" of the tongue, producing a high amplitude, full sensory experience.

Malcom Gladwell's writing in _What the Dog Saw_pro
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Malcolm Gladwell is a United Kingdom-born, Canadian-raised journalist now based in New York City. He is a former business and science writer at the Washington Post. He has been a staff writer for The New Yorker since 1996. He is best known as the author of the books The Tipping Point: How Little Things Can Make a Big Difference (2000), Blink: The Power of Thinking Without Thinking (2005), Outliers ...more
“Good writing does not succeed or fail on the strength of its ability to persuade. It succeeds or fails on the strength of its ability to engage you, to make you think, to give you a glimpse into someone else's head.” 184 likes
“Nothing frustrates me more than someone who reads something of mine or anyone else's and says, angrily, 'I don't buy it.' Why are they angry? Good writing does not succeed or fail on the strength of its ability to persuade. It succeeds or fails on the strength of its ability to engage you, to make you think, to give you a glimpse into someone else's head—even if in the end you conclude that someone else's head is not a place you'd really like to be.” 29 likes
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